The Hollywood Reporter's Borys Kit has been told that James Gunn's Suicide Squad will not be a sequel to David Ayer's 2016 film. DC and Warner Bros don't have much of a reputation to actually mess with at the moment, so can perhaps afford to take on the risk of hiring the director. It's not like they're standing around waiting for his approval.
Disney fired the two-time Grammy nominee in July after offensive tweets he wrote between 2008-2012 joking about rape, child abuse, and pedophilia resurfaced in the #MeToo movement. Gunn's Suicide Squad could conceivably differ from Ayer's in terms of story alone, thereby employing numerous first film's same cast members and characters. Ayer was reportedly "never expected to return" for Suicide Squad 2, given that his relationship with Warner Bros. grew tumultuous during post-production, when the filmmaker and the studio created "competing cuts" of the film. It didn't take too long for Gunn to land a new job and, to be honest, this is a pretty good gig. It is unclear who will direct the next Guardians film, though there has been speculation that Thor: Ragnarok's Taika Waititi would be a logical candidate given the offbeat nature of that hit film matched the quirkiness of Guardians.
Ayer welcomed Gunn aboard and wrote, "I think it's an incredibly courageous and smart move by the studio".
James Gunn is back, and poised to oversee a marquee franchise. A move to DC-which is in desperate need of creative direction-would be a definitive middle finger to Marvel for letting him go, and Gunn's sensibilities would actually be ideal for the bad guys forced to do good of Suicide Squad.