Suicide Squad director David Ayer admitted that the inclusion of the "damaged" tattoo on The Joker's forehead was an error that he still regrets.
Writing on his personal X account, the filmmaker responded to criticisms regarding the design, acknowledging that the idea behind the tattoo is entirely him. "I own the tattoo idea 100%. It was my choice," Ayer wrote. "Original idea is it would say 'Blessed' and not 'Damaged.' Now having said that — I regret that decision. It created acrimony and division. Not every idea is a good idea. And I’ll just be in the corner here while the internet slaps me around for this post."
This isn't the first time Ayer has acknowledged the "damaged" tattoo, previously acknowledging that the design was intended to serve as a piece of world-building. "It was Joker trolling Batman after getting his teeth punched in by him. It’s the one aesthetic choice I wish I hadn’t made. Caught a lot of smoke for it obviously," Ayer wrote in early 2023.
Suicide Squad Fails to Impress
While Suicide Squad may have garnered a cult following in the years since its release, the film is widely regarded as one of the worst DC Universe projects. Ayer insists the film was the victim of studio interference, noting that his original cut would have fixed many of the issues raised by fans and critics. Whether this version of the movie sees the light of day is unknown but the director did recently note that DC Studios co-CEO James Gunn said that the so-called "Ayer Cut" will someday be released. "All I know is my unseen film plays much better than the studio release. The interest in my cut being [shown] seems real and organic. And Gunn told me it would have [its] time to be shared," Ayer wrote.
Upon its premiere Suicide Squad, was blasted by critics for its messy story, weak characters and poor action sequences. The response prompted Ayer to accuse Warner Bros. of tampering with his movie and re-editing it into the version that was ultimately released. "My cut isn’t perfect. But it’s vastly better than the studio hack job," he wrote. "People have seen it. The typical reaction is shock how much better it is. This is across a sample of ages and fans and non fans."
Suicide Squad is available to stream on Max.