Peacemaker's Opening Dance Sequence Was Written Into The Script By James Gunn

Since it debuted earlier this month, everyone has been raving about HBO Max's "The Suicide Squad" spinoff series "Peacemaker." From the incredible performances by John Cena and Freddie Stroma to the killer soundtrack to everyone's new favorite sidekick Eagly to the surprisingly poignant themes, this show has everything you could want from an R-rated superhero series and more. Although, I'm fairly certain that no one expected the "and more" category to include an incredible dance number as the opening credits.

The stoic yet silly sequence set to "Do You Want To Taste It?" by Wig Wam has been so embraced by fans that many have vowed to never skip it despite HBO Max's persistent and unnecessary offer to do so. And we wouldn't have it without Charissa-Lee Barton, the veteran dancer and choreographer behind all the amazing steps and movements we see at the top of each "Peacemaker" episode. However, it appears that the final product was more of a collaboration with the show's creator James Gunn than we initially imagined.

And We Danced

As we've seen throughout his career, Gunn has a very clear vision when it comes to his work (but he's not pretentious or obnoxious about it). He gets involved in just about every step of the filmmaking process in order to bring exactly what he's looking for to life. Even the songs he envisions for certain scenes make their way into his scripts. And when it comes to "Peacemaker," it appears that the opening dance number was also conceived during the writing process. Barton then came in later to flesh it all out. While chatting with our own BJ Colangelo, the brilliant choreographer revealed what the process was like for her.

"Well, it started with what James wrote in the script, which was very clear. He wrote very clearly that we open on Peacemaker standing in the middle of the space and he starts to do this weird dance and then Vigilante and Adebayo fold in. And then it became a little more general like 'and then other people fold in' and so on. And then he wrote with very clear direction, they all do this weird dance with a straight face, no emotion. And then at the end, Eagly flies in and joins the group. So all of that was spelled out.

"I had some structure to work within, thankfully and the first thing that I did was read the scripts. And so I had a really good sense — I mean, read any of the scripts and you recognize right off the top, the tone. It's very, very clear what the tone is and he's such a brilliant writer. And so the context of what he had written for the sequence, and the tone, and personality of the show gave me boundaries."

As a writer, I often find myself acting out whatever action I want my characters to do in a scene in an effort to better describe what happens in the action block or the stage directions. After this revelation about Gunn and the opening credits, I can't help but picture him dancing in front of a mirror with a completely straight face while conceiving this scene (he did, after all, provide the motion capture for Baby Groot's dance in "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2"). The thought makes me smile almost as much as the sequence itself. Maybe one day we'll be treated to James Gunn's own rendition of the dance where he fills in for John Cena. Maybe not, but we can certainly dream.

New episodes of "Peacemaker" release Thursdays on HBO Max.