Now that Warner Bros. Pictures has found success with Aquaman, Wonder Woman, and Shazam!, the outlook is a little brighter for Birds of Prey, the live-action feature that brings back Suicide Squad actress Margot Robbie as the deranged Harley Quinn.
Otherwise known as Birds of Prey (And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn), the film teams Robbie’s Harley Quinn with a group of female heroes and villains from the DC Comics universe. The eighth film in the DC Extended Universe, Birds of Prey is scheduled to hit theaters February 7, 2020. Here’s everything we know about it so far.
In an extremely unusual twist, Birds of Prey (or the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) officially changed its title after a potentially disastrous opening weekend at the global box office.
Websites for many U.S. cinema chains, like AMC, Cinemark, and Regal, have updated the film’s title to Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey. The title has not changed on-screen.
The film, which had an $82m production budget, grossed just $33.2m domestically and $81m worldwide on its opening weekend, making it the lowest opening weekend gross for a film in the new DC Comics Cinematic Universe.
In the first full clip from Birds of Prey, we see Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn striking up a bargain with villain Black Mask (Ewan McGregor). This is our first look at a complete, continuous scene in the upcoming DC movie.
Warner Bros. shared a new image gallery with Bloody Disgusting highlighting Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn along with her band of antiheroes. Mary Elizabeth Winstead’s Huntress, Jurnee Smollett-Bell’s Black Canary, Ella Jay Basco’s Cassandra Cain, and Rosie Perez’s Renee Montoya, as well as villain Black Mask, played by Ewan McGregor, are featured. Check out the photos below.
The final trailer for Birds of Prey gives a few clues to how Harley Quinn became emancipated from “Mister J” (The Joker will not be in this film) and started running with a like-minded group of delinquent warriors. We get glimpses of Ewan McGregor as the big bad, Roman Sionis (aka Black Mask), as well as Harley’s team, including Huntress (Mary Elizabeth Winstead), Black Canary (Jurnee Smollett-Bell), Renee Montoya (Rosie Perez), and Cassandra Cain (Ella Jay Basco).
The fun begins February 7.
The first, full-length trailer for Birds of Prey (see above) was released October 1, and offered a good look at Robbie’s return as Harley Quinn, as well as her colorful supporting cast.
The studio teased the release of the trailer by debuting four posters for the film featuring Robbie as Harley Quinn.
The first teaser for Birds of Prey was released January 28, and introduced the primary cast members for the film and how their characters will appear in the project.
Along with Robbie as Harley Quinn, the film’s cast includes Mary Elizabeth Winstead as Huntress, Jurnee Smollett-Bell as Black Canary, Ella Jay Basco as Cassandra Cain, Ewan McGregor as the villain Black Mask, and Rosie Perez as Renee Montoya.
Supporting cast members include Ali Wong (Fresh Off the Boat), Robert Catrini (American Crime Story), Chris Messina (Sharp Objects), Steven Williams (It), and Derek Wilson (Preacher).
Behind the camera
In April 2018, little-known filmmaker Cathy Yan was hired to helm the film. Yan previously directed 2017’s Dead Pigs, a small-budget drama that won the World Cinema Dramatic Award For Ensemble Acting at the Sundance Film Festival. Yan also wrote and directed several short films, and was a Wall Street Journal reporter.
Yan is now the second female filmmaker in Warner Bros. Pictures’ superhero universe after Patty Jenkins helmed Wonder Woman, and she is the first Asian female director to helm a mainstream superhero movie. Robbie, who is also one of the producers on the film, reportedly made a strong push to bring in a female director on the project.
Yan will be directing the film from a script penned by Christina Hodson, the screenwriter on the Transformers spinoff film Bumblebee and the upcoming Batgirl movie.
Harley past, present, and future
Along with reprising the role of Harley Quinn in Birds of Prey, Robbie is expected to make a return as the character in The Suicide Squad, a soft reboot of the supervillain team-up franchise that began with 2016’s Suicide Squad. Two more films featuring the character — a Gotham City Sirens film and a project with Harley Quinn and Jared Leto’s Joker — have been announced, but appear to have been put on the back burner by the studio.
Updated on February 11, 2020: Added news of the title change.
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