Joel Kinnaman, who starred in the first Suicide Squad as Rick Flag, is readying for the release of James Gunn’s recalibrated Squad next year and, in a new interview, says Gunn’s take is a different experience.
Talking with The Hollywood Reporter, Kinnaman stated Gunn’s script made him laugh and the actor feels like he was in an R-rated comedy, a first for him.
“That movie is going to be insane. The script is so funny,” Kinnaman said. “Every page of that script was funny, and every page made me laugh.”
He continued, praising Gunn’s mastery of genre and comedy. “James just has this command of that genre, but also over every aspect of comedy and even the marketing,” shared the Swede.
Kinnaman adds, “He just understands the world so well, and since he wrote it, he really reinvents not just the concepts, but also the characters.”
Then he went into looking at The Suicide Squad as a comedy. “For me, it was like I did my first comedy, but it’s like heavily R-rated,” said Kinnaman. “It was a real learning experience for me, too, because I’d never done a comedy in that way before.”
Kinnaman’s comments got a bit R-rated (or PG-13) but he stated James Gunn mentored him, sort of. “So I asked James to work with me and teach me this…yeah, we had so much fun doing it,” he shared.
John Cena (Peacemaker) was a big part of the fun, recalled Kinnaman, who lauded Cena’s comic genius. “John Cena…is a comedic genius,” said Kinnaman. “No one would make us laugh on set more than John.”
He added, “Every scene he was in, he would go on an improvised tangent.” Credit for that skill goes to Cena’s wrestling/sports entertainment background, a form and profession often regarded for executing things on the fly.
Kinnaman later compared the spirit of David Ayer’s film and Gunn’s, saying “I think we brought that spirit of the first film into the second one as well.”
Both sets had an absence of egos, he says, and everybody in squad mode working for the better of the group. “It’s also something about the whole concept of being a squad,” he mused, recalling “There was never a bad ego on either of these films; not the first or the second one.”
The RoboCop 2014 star further recollected, “On both films, there were really generous, warm, funny people around that were just about feeding the collective.”
After putting over the “monster” of a film by dropping a definitive F-bomb, he then admitted, “Honestly, even though I’m in it, I can’t wait to see it as a fan.”
Kinnaman also discussed the cancellation of Altered Carbon and his friendship with Prometheus’s Noomi Rapace, whom he’s known since high school.
The two of them star in the revenge thriller set shortly after World War 2, The Secrets We Keep – currently available through digital on-demand.
The Suicide Squad rolls out theatrically in August 2021.