The squad is already down one of its major members ahead of its upcoming sequel.
Variety reports that Smith – who played Batman villain and contract marksman Floyd Lawton, a.k.a. Deadshot in the first Suicide Squad movie – has decided to step away from a potential return in The Suicide Squad, the upcoming (and recently dated) sequel set to be directed by former Guardians of the Galaxydirector James Gunn.
Variety notes that the decision came down to scheduling and was allegedly an amicable one, rather than Smith wanting to be out of his role in the now wildly-expanding DC cinematic universe. Although it was never officially confirmed that Smith would reprise his role as Deadshot for the sequel, the character was one of the few major members of the team still left standing by the end of the first film, so it was always sort of assumed that Deadshot would be in any sequel plans. At one point, there were even rumors that Smith could helm his own spinoff with the character, so it’s not like there weren’t plans for more Deadshot – at least, at some point.
Recent reports however alleged that Gunn’s sequel would focus on primarily new characters rather than returning stars from the original film, so it makes sense that, if Smith had schedule conflicts, Warner Bros. allowed him to depart rather than fighting to keep Deadshot in the movie.
Plenty of time to find a replacement candidate, at least! The Suicide Squad is currently set for an August 6, 2021 release date.