joel kinnaman

Joel Kinnaman will apparently not be back in James Gunn‘s ‘The Suicide Squad’.  Although it had previously been reported that his character, Rick Flag, would be one of three characters from the 2016 original, simply called ‘Suicide Squad’, that would be back for the follow-up, a source has reported that Gunn’s screenplay does not include Flag.  According to those initial reports, Flag would have been kept, along with Will Smith‘s Deadshot and Margot Robbie‘s Harley Quinn.  Now that doesn’t seem to be the case.

Flag was one of the US government’s top special operatives, selected to police the Suicide Squad, a team of expendable supervillains recruited to go on a “suicide mission” in exchange for their freedom.

It was announced last week that Smith would not be back as Deadshot, due to scheduling conflicts.  (He is currently filming ‘Bad Boys for Life’ with Martin Lawrence, a revival of their hit franchise from the ’90s.)  Rather than write the character out– ‘The Suicide Squad’ is expected to begin shooting soon– it was just announced that Idris Elba was very close to signing on to replace Smith.  It was in The Hollywood Reporter‘s announcement of this recasting that it was stated that the character Rick Flag did not appear in Gunn’s screenplay.

James Gunn was hired by Warner Brothers to write ‘The Suicide Squad’ after he was fired by Disney last year.  After completing it, he then entered negotiations to direct as well.  His previous Marvel successes, ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ and ‘Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2’, both showcased a ragtag group of misfit criminals forced to work together for the greater good.  This made him a perfect fit for ‘The Suicide Squad’, which is said to be more of a reboot than a direct sequel to the first.

‘The Suicide Squad’ is already scheduled to hit theaters on August 6, 2021, so production should begin soon, most likely whenever Robbie wraps ‘Birds of Prey’, which is shooting now.

After ‘Suicide Squad’ Kinnaman starred on the first season of Netflix’s ‘Altered Carbon’, and he is now starring in Amazon Prime’s ‘Hanna’.  He will be seen later this summer in the crime drama ‘The Informer’.  He is also expected to star in Apple’s new untitled space series from ‘Battlestar Galactica’s Ronald D. Moore.

Are you sad to see Flag go?