Another day, another story about Suicide Squad.
Now I had no intention of saying anything else about this film, because, well, what else is there to say? It’s not the savior of the DC Universe that the suits so desperately want it to be, its ticket sales have dropped by 41% going into its second weekend (Civil War’s was a mere 19%). It’s probably not getting released in the worlds second largest market- China, meaning that it’s really going to struggle to reach the 750 million dollars it need to break even and it’s being sued by a Scotsman known as BlackPanther2016 over it’s lack of Joker.
Yeah, apparently BlackPanther2016 was forced to drive all the way from the barren wasteland of ‘Not London’ which apparently doesn’t have any cinemas to the Utopia of London which does. There, he paid his money, took his ticket, watched the film and then- in his own words.
“Movie trailers are like food menus, they give you a preview of what you’re gonna get. You look at a McDonald’s menu and you choose to get your favourite burger, presented in a nice picture with pickles, chicken, mild cheese (your favourite, in fact that’s the only reason you’re getting this burger, because you love mild cheese). You use your hard-worked money to pay for this burger, you get the burger, only to find out that this isn’t the burger you ordered. Yes it has pickles and chicken but it doesn’t have mild cheese, it has regular cheese.
“Suicide Squad trailers showcased several specific Joker scenes that I had to pay for the whole movie just so that I can go watch those specific scenes that Warner Bros/DC Comics had advertised in their trailers and TV spots. These scenes are: when Joker banged his head on his car window, when Joker says ‘“Let me show you my toys’, when Joker punches the roof of his car, when Joker drops a bomb with his face all messed up and says, ‘Bye bye!’ None of these scenes were in the movie.
“I drove 300 miles to London to go watch these specific scenes they had explicitly advertised in their TV ads…and they didn’t show them to me. Adding to this, they were also two specific Katana scenes they advertised that were also the reason I wanted to go watch the movie. These scenes were: Katana’s eyes going black, and a slow motion shot of her and her sword taking souls in a smoky kind of style. These scenes were advertised several times in the first trailer and many TV ads but they didn’t show it to me in the movie. I wasted a lot of money paying and travelling to go watch this movie because of these specific scenes they had advertised to me and all of us saying, ‘Hey, check out our preview! This will all be in our movie, come watch it on the 5th!’ All lies.
“If you advertise something, give me what you have advertised. Period. This is becoming a habit with movie studios, showing epic scenes in trailers that are never shown in the movies. It’s unjust.
“I just want to say, join me if you feel the same way. Let’s stop this nonsense of false bulls***ery and don’t let them bribe you with their ‘deluxe premium special directors gold extended edition supreme cut’ nonsense. You should get what they advertised as their first theatre showing and what you have paid for based on what they have showed you in their advertisements.”
Now, I wish Mr. Panther the best of luck with the lawsuit that he claims his “lawyer brother” will handle. I would also like to point out that this type of lawsuit does have precedent. A resident of Michigan sued the distributor of the 2011 film Drive as it “bore very little similarity to a chase, or race action film … having very little driving in the motion picture” and in a more serious note- “substantially contained extreme, gratuitous, dehumanising racism directed at members of the Jewish faith, and thereby promoted criminal violence against members of the Jewish faith”. I can’t find out if she won or not.
Someone who did win their case was a New Zealand film buff, named only as J Congdon who sued Jack Reacher for a less than 1 second missing explosion that was allegedly was ‘the defining part of the ad’. He won has case and was refunded his ticket.
Now whether you enjoyed Leto’s Joker or regarded it as one of the worst portrayals of the character ever (and opinions do seem seem strangely polarized) I have to confess a strange admiration for Mr. Panther and his ‘lawyer brother’ and do hope they succeed. Trailers do lie to the public (mostly over how much I’m going to enjoy their mediocre offering) and if this is the start of change then it can only be a good thing.
Note-At time of writing (10/08/16) Neither Warner Brothers no DC have responded to the threatened legal action.