It's become impossible to even open your eyes this week without seeing some mention of Suicide Squad, DC's latest formative entry in their ongoing cinematic universe. Prior to the release, hopes were high that David Ayer's first foray into comic book filmmaking would help save the reputation of the DCEU. Now that the reviews are in, it's looking like Suicide Squad isn't the huge leap forward in quality that audiences had hoped for.
On set reports of Ayer's mind games and used condom gifts could potentially tarnish the reputation of Suicide Squad even further, yet it seems that bad publicity won't stop Warner Bros. from raking in the dough this weekend.
Suicide Squad Is Set To Have An Explosive Opening Weekend
Fandango and MovieTickets.com both report that Suicide Squad is set to overtake Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy for the biggest ever opening weekend in August. This is a hugely impressive feat, especially considering the negative press surrounding the film's release.
It seems somewhat appropriate, then, that DC's madcap team of villains would break the record of their rival's very own oddball group of misfits. But what we don't know is whether Suicide Squad will be able to earn more than GOTG in the long haul.
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice also broke records in its opening weekend, but poor reviews quickly stunted the film's box office potential, preventing it from hitting the billion dollar mark that both analysts and the studio itself were expecting.
Deadshot and his pals still have the potential to overtake Zack Snyder's previous DCEU movies, except for one huge roadblock that could prove to the nail in the coffin for Suicide Squad. That's right. China's at it again, guys.
How Important Is The Chinese Box Office Internationally?
In the past decade, the Chinese box office has become integral to the overall success of Hollywood movies, to the point where studios have heavily edited their own films in hope that they'll make it past China's notoriously tough ratings board.
Fans who prayed that Suicide Squad's PG-13 rating would help the film reach China's shores may be out of luck — despite Warner Bros. tweaking the film's title to "Special Task Force X" in an effort to appease censors.
While a ban hasn't been officially placed yet, Ayer's entry into the DCEU is yet to receive a release date in China and as time goes on, the chances of Special Task Force X clinching a deal seems less and less likely. The Chinese censorship board usually approves movies a few months before their release, so the fact that we still haven't heard anything is extremely troubling.
This can't be an easy time for Warner Bros., who are undoubtedly banking on Suicide Squad to recoup both its $175 million budget and the reputation of the DCEU. Although time will tell whether the film's box office will fizzle out quickly or explode like one of Amanda Waller's dashing neck pieces.
Suicide Squad Isn't The Only Superhero Film To Be Banned From China
Even if Suicide Squad doesn't open in China, other superhero movies such as Deadpool and The Dark Knight continued to thrive globally, despite them both being banned for indecent violence and reports of cultural insensitivity. However, it's fair to say that Warner Bros. need all the help they can get right now and a Chinese ban certainly won't help matters.
The last notable film that Chinese censors banned was Ghostbusters, which also suffered from negative press. Since then, the comedy blockbuster has failed to come even remotely close to breaking even, despite receiving relatively strong reviews.
Whether Suicide Squad stalls or not though, Warner Bros will undoubtedly push ahead with their plans to extend the DCEU further. The mid-credits scene has already begun to lay the groundwork for the return of Waller's team and trailers for both Wonder Woman and Justice League premiered at SDCC last week to rave reviews, so don't lose hope just yet fellow DC lovers. The Joker's on hand to cheer you up.