WWE star John Cena will add a DC Comics character to his list of credits when he appears in James Gunn’s upcoming film The Suicide Squad. Cena’s role in the film remains a mystery, but he tells Collider that he’s been eager to work with Gunn ever since seeing the director’s work on Marvel Studios’ Guardians of the Galaxy movies. “When I watch Guardians, immediately I’m connected to these people and I walk away with a certain takeaway from that movie,” Cena says. “It has nothing to do with the preconceived notions of the comic book characters. I watched the movie for the movie and I enjoy it.
“I’m also a storyteller at heart. I got to go out there on a nightly basis in WWE and entertain Birmingham, Alabama and make them want to believe that they want to see a WWE title switch or that so-and-so hates so-and-so or whatever story we’re trying to put together for that night. So I tip my cap to a great storyteller. James is a writer and a developer and he has great vision.”
Even more than his storytelling capabilities, Cena was impressed with Gunn’s dedication. “You want to go to work with people who jump out of bed every day and want to go to work,” Cena says. “[Gunn] is the epitome of that. He cares so much about what he’s doing and I think especially when he’s put in a position to write, develop, and do this by his rules essentially. He chose the franchise. He kind of dictated his terms and now he’s really betting on himself and I hope everybody enjoys seeing it as much as we’re enjoying making it because it’s awesome.”
Gunn's film is expected to earn an R-rating. The film is a follow-up, but not a sequel, to David Ayer's 2016 Suicide Squad movies. In addition to Cena, the film's cast also includes returning stars Margot Robbie (Harley Quinn), Viola Davis (Amanda Waller), Joel Kinnaman (Rick Flag) and Jai Courtney (Captain Boomerang), and newcomers Peter Capaldi, Idris Elba, Michael Rooker, Nathan Fillion, Sean Gunn, David Dastmalchian, Storm Reid, Pete Davidson, and Taika Waititi.
The Suicide Squad opens in theaters on August 6, 2021. Other upcoming DC Films movies include Birds of Prey (And The Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) on February 7th, Wonder Woman 1984 on June 5th, The Batman on June 25, 2021, Black Adam on December 22, 2021, Shazam! 2 on April 1, 2022, Super Pets on May 20, 2022, The Flash on July 1, 2022, and Aquaman 2 on December 16, 2022.
Cover photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images