Jared Leto’s Joker is easily the most talked about, as well as the most highly anticipated aspect of this summer’s Suicide Squad – mostly because of Heath Ledger’s legacy, who will forever be remembered by many as the one and only best Joker of all time; after all, his performance is often regarded as one of the best in movie history.
Leto has said in various interviews that he is very much aware of this, and also that he doesn’t even want to try to ‘beat’ Heath Ledger, per say. He always emphasized that he just wants fans to remember him for his Joker; in short, he plans to make the role his own and create his own version of it.
This could first be seen when the first promo image of him was released online, which showed a radically different approach to the look of the character.
Naturally, everyone started to try and decipher the meaning of all those tattoos, or to find out if they even have a specific meaning at all. Spoiler alert: They do, check it out here.
However, we now have some additional details on how they even came about in the first place, how they were created and how they’re going to be used in the movie.
“I think we had to obviously do something different than people have seen before,” producer Andy Horowitz noted during a press set visit last summer.
“Tattoos are obviously a big part of a good character, and the tattoo that you guys see down here,” he added, pointing to the drawn-on smile on the Joker’s hand (which the first released shot had on his forearm instead), “will be a very, very fun thing in the movie when he decides to put his hand in front of his face and create his iconic smile.”
Co-producer Richard Suckle mentioned that there were numerous different designs they experimented with, saying they “are big part of the design of this character.” In the end, they went with the design that Toronto local tattoo artist Rob Coutts, who was discovered by director David Ayer during pre-production.
“[Coutts] designed all those things and everything that you see on Jared,” Suckle said. “He was a real great addition and a real blessing for us to find. Tattoos play a role in a number of the characters, not just exclusive to Joker.”
Other characters with tattoos include Harley Quinn and Diablo, showing both her devotion to the Joker and his past with street gangs.
Suicide Squad hits theaters August 5, 2016.