James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad is almost upon us, finally releasing into theaters on August 6th, and the hype around it is growing. Harly Quinn herself, Margot Robbie, has given some amazing praise to the film calling The Suicide Squad the GOAT comic book film, and it seems everyone involved believes it’s really special. Idris Elba’s Bloodsport is a character fans can’t wait to see in action. Many have believed Elba replaced Will Smith, but he’s playing a completely different character in Bloodsport, and James Gunn has changed Bloodsport in some cool ways from the comics. Heading into The Suicide Squad, the actor was already familiar with playing comic book characters, and now he’s explained “the big difference” between playing Bloodsport and Thor’s Heimdall.
Idris Elba is no stranger to playing comic book characters, appearing as Heimdall in the Thor franchise in the MCU prior to landing the gig in the DCEU. Heimdall was more of a side character and pretty one-note in the Thor trilogy, so playing Bloodsport, a more featured character, came with some added perks. Idris Elba spoke to Digital Spy about The Suicide Squad and his character, and he explained what’s different about playing Heimdall versus Bloodsport, saying:
For me as a character, playing Heimdall [for Marvel], who is a pivotal character but much smaller, versus Bloodsport, who's a central character, is a big difference. I had a little bit more influence on the early discussions about Bloodsport's costume, what he looks like, because this is the first time he's being depicted on the big screen.
“The big difference” is Bloodsport is a more pivotal character than Heimdall, and that gave the actor some more room to have a say in the care taken and the direction the character went. Idris Elba seemed excited that he could have some input on Bloodsport's costume and the direction the character would go in, which seems to different from his experience as Heimdall. Whether that's a difference in the way James Gunn works or a difference in the way DC versus Marvel works is what interests me.
To note, Idris Elba has not always been pumped about his Marvel character. In fact, Thor: The Dark World was a sore spot for the actor. In my opinion, the first two Thor films were sometimes very dull, serious, and overly Shakespearean at times. Thor: Ragnorok changed the entire formula making Thor one of the most enjoyable and hottest properties in the MCU. Idris Elba’s experience working on Thor: Ragnarok seems to have reignited Elba’s enthusiasm for Heimdall, and he's previously stated he wants to play him again. For now though, Idris Elba is enjoying being a central figure in the new improved The Suicide Squad, and I'm excited to see what he can do as Bloodsport.
Idris Elba’s The Suicide Squad co-star Jai Courtney has remarked on how James Gunn’s version compares to the 2016 Suicide Squad, and the praise he gives for Gunn’s vision is exciting. Margot Robbie is clearly thrilled with the film and is excited for more Harley Quinn in the future. The stars of The Suicide Squad have seemingly had nothing but praise for James Gunn’s his vision for the film, and they all seem like they had a blast working on and creating one of the more unique comic book movies ever. We'll have to wait and see if James Gunn’s DC debut will be appointment viewing, but for the cast it seems the movie was a win.
The Suicide Squad is out August 8. For more release dates, take a look at CinemaBlend's full schedule.