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Why James Gunn Egged On Idris Elba And John Cena While Filming The Suicide Squad

Director James Gunn has assembled a wide variety of characters for "The Suicide Squad" as the villains head to Corto Maltese in the latest chapter in the DC Extended Universe. But two members of the squad are remarkably similar in terms of what they can do: Bloodsport (Idris Elba) and Peacemaker (John Cena). They both wield guns and cause as much carnage as possible with their weapons — that's without mentioning their interesting headgear choices. Bloodsport's reflective helmet features a set of intimidating teeth, while Peacemaker wears what can best be described as a decorative bedpan, but a bit more cool.

Don't worry, they've completely different motivations in the film. Bloodsport — whose real name is Robert DuBois — is only part of the squad so that he can get out of prison much earlier and see his daughter Tyla (Storm Reid) again. Meanwhile Peacemaker has much broader ambitions, aiming to achieve peace no matter the bloody cost. But it turns out the two antiheroes are fully aware of their similarities, with Idris Elba recently explaining at "The Suicide Squad" press conference they have a "natural rivalry" compared to the rest of the team. The star also noted that he and Cena "gravitated to this natural d***-swinging competition that was just a lot of fun."

And of course, director James Gunn egged them both on to get better performances out of the cast.

Peacemaker vs. Bloodsport

Idris Elba noted that James Gunn would set the two actors against each other when shooting one particular scene in an attempt to heat up the rivalry between the characters even further, saying "for us it was a really great fight and James would really egg Idris and John on to make Peacemaker and Bloodsport really pop on screen." It'll be interesting to see how this fight plays out and who comes out on top. Maybe Peacemaker getting his own spin-off series on HBO Max is a consolation prize for being beaten by Bloodsport? Or maybe not. Only James Gunn knows, for now.

When touching on the similarities between Peacemaker and Bloodsport, John Cena explained "I think that really starts the fuel for the one-upsmanship. They really want to battle for that position," adding that the dynamic between the two is different to the rest of the team, saying "whereas the other superheroes do not necessarily need to compete as much because they have definable characteristics."

Cena also went on to say that the "wonderful one-upsmanship" between the two characters makes for some great comedic moments throughout the film. James Gunn is no stranger to making two similar characters clash in interesting ways, Rocket Raccoon's (Bradley Cooper) back-and-forth banter with Star-Lord (Chris Pratt) in "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2" was pitch perfect. So it's clear that Peacemaker and Bloodsport's status as frenemies will make for excellent cinema in the action-packed adventure.