With Suicide Squad set to start shooting before summer, Warner Bros. and DC are scrambling to find a replacement for Tom Hardy, who dropped out of the project citing a scheduling conflict. While the studio was keen on having Jake Gyllenhaal replace him, it has since been reported that Gyllenhaal passed on the role of Rick Flagg. Now, a new rumor indicates that both Joel Edgerton and Jon Bernthal are being eyed for the role. A second report indicates that Gary Sinise has joined the movie as General Eiling, but that has not been officially confirmed. And a third report claims that Joe Manganiello is being targeted to play Deathstroke.
Jon Bernthal had been rumored for the role of Rick Flagg before Warner Bros. officially announced that Tom Hardy had won the part late last year. Having Bernthal join the movie makes sense, as he previously co-starred in director David Ayer's last project Fury, and the actor certainly fits the character's description.
It has been rumored that Tom Hardy actually exited Suicide Squad due to Rick Flagg's diminished role in the latest draft of the script, which gives more screen time to Deadshot (Will Smith) and The Joker (Jared Leto). Having either Jon Bernthal or Joel Edgerton come aboard will better suit the production, as they are accomplished actors, yet they do not pull the same marquee value as Tom Hardy, and may be more apt to take on this smaller, yet very important role.
Cinemablend, who first reported on Jon Bernthal or Joel Edgerton possibly being involved with the project also confirm that Gary Sinise has landed a role in Suicide Squad, though that news hasn't hit the trades just yet. While El Mayimbe first broke this news on Twitter, with Sinise said to be taking on the role of General Eiling, Cinemablend claims that second part of the story is false. They also say it is unlikely that the actor is set to play Deathstroke. It is instead believed that Joe Manganiello is nearing a deal to play Deathstroke. But, again, like everything else in this story, none of it has been confirmed by anyone actually involved in the production.
However this plays out, Warner Bros. is going to need to make a decision fast, as Suicide Squad already has an August 2016 release date firmly in place. Delaying that could possibly throw their entire upcoming DC slate off course. What do you guys think?