David Ayer says he regrets giving Jared Leto’s Joker a specific facial tattoo in Suicide Squad

David Ayer says he regrets giving Jared Leto’s Joker a “Damaged” facial tatoo in Suicide Squad because the studio cut lacked context.

David Ayer, Suicide Squad, Jared Leto, tattoos

Several years after the release of David Ayer’s Suicide Squad, fans (and the filmmaker) are still discussing what did and didn’t work for the villain-centric DC film. One topic that continually crops up is Jared Leto’s portrayal of the Jester of Genocide, Joker. While Leto’s version includes the classic character’s chemically-tinged green hair, twisted grimace, and warped body language, there’s an aspect of Joker’s appearance that bothers Ayer, too. I’m talking, of course, about Joker’s facial tattoos—specifically, the word “Damaged” on his forehead.

Ayer shared a photo of Leto in full Joker regalia on Twitter, to which a fan said Leto’s version of the character was a letdown. Ayer is extremely vocal online regarding Suicide Squad and how fans have yet to see his preferred version of the film. He often responds to fan comments about the movie, and this instance was no exception. Responding to the harsh analysis, Ayer said, “that’s what happens when you hack a performance and character arc to pieces. I’m sorry that’s all you were allowed to see. Now your mind is closed to the truth.”

Ayer continued by responding to a question about Joker’s “Damaged” tattoo, saying he regrets its inclusion, even if the ink has a story to tell. According to Ayer, the tattoo serves to “troll” Batman, who, in Ayer’s universe, knocked out Joker’s teeth by punching him in his Cheshire grin. Responding to the question about the tattoo, Ayer said it was “the one aesthetic choice” he wished he didn’t make and “caught a lot of smoke” for its inclusion.

What do you think about Joker’s appearance in David Ayer’s Suicide Squad? Do you think Warner Bros. will ever release Ayer’s version of the film, or has that ship sailed for good now that James Gunn and Peter Safran are rebooting the DCU? Are you a Suicide Squad defender? Feel free to let us know what you love about the film in the comments section below, and show a little love for Ayer’s vision of DC’s Task Force X and all the deaths that come with being one of Amanda Waller’s pet projects.

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