Too Much Will Not Enough Deadshot

Suicide Squad Trailer Gives Us Way Too Much Will Smith — And Not Enough Deadshot [Opinion]

The Suicide Squad Comic Con trailer was officially released to YouTube on Monday after low-quality versions leaked to the internet. Warner Bros. decided to follow the earlier example of Marvel (whose Age of Ultron teaser leaked in a similar manner) and provide a better quality glimpse.

There are two characters we see way more of than anyone else: Harley Quinn and Deadshot. Having Will Smith portraying Deadshot has been a feared miscast since its announcement, much like with Jesse Eisenberg as Lex Luthor. And just as with the recently released Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice trailer, Smith is pretty much the most out-of-place aspect. The key difference is that we get to see comparatively very little of Eisenberg’s Luthor.

We see a lot of Will Smith. Deadshot? Eh, not so much.

You see, I grew up on Will Smith. From Fresh Prince of Bel-Air to Independence Day and Men In Black. Sometimes Smith can make a character utterly his own, as was the case in the much-lauded Pursuit of Happyness. But other times, Will portrays a character, and you’re not able to suspend disbelief; All you see is Will Smith in costume.

One example of this was Smith as James West in the Wild Wild West. You can also make the argument for Agent Jay in Men In Black.

With Suicide Squad, the question is going to be, “Do I buy Will as this character?” As of now, the answer is absolutely not.

I blame this entirely on Warner Bros. and their overestimation of the importance of having a known actor associated with Suicide Squad. It makes me wonder if they would have leaned this hard on Tom Hardy if he stayed on.

The need to assure the audience of “star power” is probably why we see Smith’s Deadshot without his mask for 95 percent of his scenes in the Suicide Squad trailer. It was a very dumb move since viewers aren’t going to see “unmasked” Deadshot…they’re going to see bald Will Smith.

Shaving one’s head doesn’t automatically make the audience associate the actor with the character. It didn’t work for Eisenberg, and it’s not worthing for Smith. Thus far, only James McAvoy as X-Men‘s Professor X seems to be enjoying any genuine appreciation. But then, James had two movies to establish an association with his character.

We need far less bald Will Smith and far more masked Deadshot if there’s even the remotest chance the movie audience will buy this casting choice.

Hopefully, as the film is still being worked on, many of the scenes will be redone with Smith in the Deadshot mask. Perhaps if we’re really lucky, the backlash against that “Time to save the world!” line will get it dropped from Suicide Squad altogether. Apparently whoever wrote the script never stopped to ask whether that line was something Deadshot would say or a severe case of “Will Smith One Liner Syndrome”.

What did you think of the Suicide Squad trailer? Do you buy Will Smith as Deadshot? Share your thoughts!

[Image Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures/YouTube]

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