Where’s Jared Leto in the lineup for The Suicide Squad? That was a big question from DC fans after James Gunn released the official cast for his movie. Many stars from Suicide Squad are returning, including Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, but not Jared Leto as Joker. Some fans were disappointed to see Leto left off the list, while others were relieved.
Sure, Will Smith is also off the list, but fans already knew that would be the case — and Idris Elba’s role was even reportedly changed from replacing Smith as Deadshot to another character, to leave room for Smith to maybe return someday.
Jared Leto’s defenders were hoping his Joker would get a real chance to shine after so much was cut from David Ayer’s Suicide Squad. Leto has said he “would definitely play the Joker again” and there were talks at one point about his Joker getting his own standalone DCEU movie.
So now fans are reacting to James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad lineup, speculating about who is playing which character, and either bashing or praising the decision to leave out Jared Leto.
Could y’all see @JohnCena as The #Joker ?! 😂 That wud be so interesting! An No @JaredLeto
WTF?! Idk what their planning 🧐🤔 #TheSuicideSquad #SuicideSquad #Batman #TheJoker #Thejokermovie #dccomics #DCUNIVERSE #MARVELLEGENDS trying tag every # so u can see #JamesGunn https://t.co/YPKKe6CmcL
— Labs Are Life (LeeLee) (@Lexiejo2639) September 14, 2019
James Gunn has been careful not to call The Suicide Squad a sequel to Suicide Squad, but since he’s bringing back so many actors and characters from the first movie, it’s not surprising that fans are wondering why Jared Leto’s Joker isn’t back for this “sequel”:
— Carla JS (@CarlsCarla) September 13, 2019
Several fans have made a point to say they’re glad Jared Leto’s controversial Suicide Squad Joker won’t be back, either making early comparisons to Joaquin Phoenix’s Joker or just keeping it simple like this:
Thank goodness Jared Leto’s Joker isn’t in #TheSuicideSquad. Much more interested in this project now.
— David (@Comicsandpixels) September 14, 2019
Even some fans who didn’t like Jared Leto’s Joker were sorry to see him left off the list.
#JaredLeto as #Joker didn’t really work but to disrespect him as an actor is wrong. This is someone who has consistently shown impressive range in his acting career. The fans of course won’t care about this but they should. #TheSuicideSquad https://t.co/6szBDDvU9Y pic.twitter.com/y54V07BJj9
— Films & Frames (@filmsnframes) September 14, 2019
Some fans are still holding out hope that Jared Leto or Will Smith makes cameo appearances in The Suicide Squad. It’s not looking likely, but fans can dream. Here are a few more responses to Leto’s absence from the cast list:
“Hooray! Jared Leto’s Joker isn’t in The Suicide Squad! It might actually be a good movie this time.”
“I just saw one tweet that suggests Pete Davidson might be playing joker & now I just can’t unsee it! Please NO! I’ll be more delight if Jared Leto keeps playing that character.”
“Jared Leto did all that amazing method acting just for 15 minutes? Wish he was selected for the Joker film and reprised the role again in new #TheSuicideSquad.”
“Happy yet very interesting over the cast listing but no Will Smith or Jared Leto like what???”
“FOR THE LOVE OF GOD I NEED JARED LETO TO BE THE JOKER AGAIN!!”
“Pete Davidson spoiled my mood. Will miss Jared Leto.”
“Not going to lie I’m glad Jared Leto won’t be in the new #TheSuicideSquad film. I couldn’t stand his version of The Joker at all.”
“The thing I’m most excited about is the absence of Jared Leto.”
What is Jared Leto doing? Well, we know he’s starring in Morbius with Matt Smith, Tyrese Gibson, Jared Harris, and Adria Arjona. That’s meant to be the second film in Sony’s Marvel Universe after Venom. But maybe he’s also doing … this?
— Pagey (@Pagmyst) September 13, 2019
Many fans revived a tweet from James Gunn about Jared Leto, leading some to wonder if there were personal decisions behind the lack of casting, beyond just not having a role for his Joker in this film. Maybe Gunn or Leto will talk more about the casting decision someday, but for now fans are left to either complain or cheer about his absence.
James Gunn’s official cast list for The Suicide Squad shut down some rumors out there but added a lot of questions. There’s plenty of time for answers to follow, since the movie is just now getting ready to start filming for its scheduled release in August 2021.