Idris Elba replaces Will Smith as Deadshot in 'Suicide Squad' sequel

Ben Arnold
Contributor
Idris Elba (Credit: Emma McIntyre/Getty Images)

Idris Elba is set to step into the shoes of Will Smith to play super-villain marksman Deadshot in Suicide Squad 2.

Smith had to exit the project earlier this month, over scheduling conflicts, and according to Variety, Warner Bros was racing to find another star to slot in before the film’s September shoot.

James Gunn will be writing and directing the movie, taking over from David Ayer, who helmed the first instalment – a critical flop, but a box office triumph, making $746 million in 2016.

Read more: Will Smith bows out of Suicide Squad 2

Gunn was drafted in having been cut loose from the Guardians of the Galaxy movies, after bad taste tweets he posted a decade ago were published by a right wing activist.

As yet, it’s not known who will be joining Elba on the bill.

The first found Margot Robbie playing psychiatrist turned super-villain Harley Quinn, and Jared Leto as The Joker, though it’s thought Leto won’t be involved in the second movie, not least because of a fractious relationship with Gunn.

Read more: Idris Elba named People’s sexiest man alive

The movie is currently working towards a release on August 6, 2021.

We’ll next see Elba on the big screen in the Fast & Furious spin-off Hobbs and Shaw, alongside Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham.

In stark contrast, he’ll also be in the new screen adaptation of the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical Cats, helmed by Tom Hooper.