There’s a simple reason for The Suicide Squad not being titled Suicide Squad 2. As producer Peter Safran told ComicBook.com in April 2019, the movie doesn’t warrant a sequel title because it, well, isn’t a sequel. “It’s called The Suicide Squad. It’s not Suicide Squad 2. It is not a sequel,” he said. I will leave that alone but, yes, it’s called The Suicide Squad.”
In October 2020, Gunn elaborated on the movie’s non-sequel nature. In an interview with Empire, the director said that the upcoming film is more or less a standalone, though he didn’t particularly set out to step on the first movie’s toes. “It’s its own thing,” Gunn said, commenting on The Suicide Squad’s relationship to Suicide Squad. “It does not contradict the first movie, I don’t think. It might in some small ways … I don’t know.”
So, if The Suicide Squad essentially reboots the franchise, then why does it feature so many members of the first movie’s cast? Apart from the fact that it probably doesn’t hurt to keep at least a few recognizable faces in a franchise, it looks like Gunn simply likes the actors Ayer chose and the characters the stars crafted.
“[Ayer] did one really, really great thing, and that is he picked fantastic actors to work with, and he dealt with these actors in building their characters in a really deep and fearless way,” Gunn said in praising his predecessor. “It’s something David definitely deserves to be lauded for, and it’s definitely added to this movie.”
Mark your calendars for The Suicide Squad — not Suicide Squad 2 — to hit theaters on August 6.