Despite its mixed reviews, Suicide Squad came out of 2016 as one of the year’s most bankable blockbusters. The DC Extended Universe flick earned more than $700 million worldwide and left scores of fans thoroughly entertained. While some have made their complaints about the movie known, many have agreed the film’s designs and character aesthetics were a nothing short of art. Clearly, the Academy Awards agreed as Suicide Squad recently earned an Oscar nomination for Hair and Makeup Design. Now, the artist behind the film’s characters is speaking out about how difficult it was to create looks for such iconic characters like the Joker and Harley Quinn.
Speaking to Deadline, Alessandro Bertolazzi had plenty to say about his tenure with Suicide Squad. While the entire vagabond team was difficult to style, the most design buzz came from baddies like the Joker, and Bertolazzi said the Gotham mobster was the most challenging character to style.
“Most challenging, of course was the Joker. Everybody does the Joker. The last Joker was amazing, so I was completely... What can I do now? Of course, that was the challenge,” the designer said. “Not to be so presumptuous to do something completely different, because nobody does different. What is different? Everybody already does everything, but do it in the right way.”
The director also admitted he worked closely with stars like Jared Leto to make sure their version of the DC villains felt right. “I said to Jared Leto, I said, “Okay, that’s the Joker.” If you don’t feel this is the Joker, I did something wrong. You have to feel it. It’s on me,” Bertolazzi stressed.
“I don’t want to be celebrated; I don’t want to do beautiful makeup. I want the actors to feel like they’re the characters.”
When it came to creating the character’s practical looks, Bertolazzi said he wanted to be as organic as possible. For the Joker, the designer poured over various hair dyes to perfect the baddie’s tonal hair-do. And, for Harley Quinn, Bertolazzi said they wanted to stress the vixen’s cartoonish nature by giving her a less-than-perfect wig.
Assemble a team of the world’s most dangerous, incarcerated Super Villains, provide them with the most powerful arsenal at the government’s disposal, and send them off on a mission to defeat an enigmatic, insuperable entity. U.S. intelligence officer Amanda Waller has determined only a secretly convened group of disparate, despicable individuals with next to nothing to lose will do. However, once they realize they weren’t picked to succeed but chosen for their patent culpability when they inevitably fail, will the Suicide Squad resolve to die trying, or decide it’s every man for himself?
Suicide Squad: The Extended Cut is now available on Digital HD, Blu-ray, and DVD.