Get ready, Gotham City, Aussie actress, producer and rising Hollywood megastar Margot Robbie is set to reprise her role as DC’s most beloved villain-turned-anti-hero Harley Quinn in the first of what is rumoured to be a new trilogy of films featuring the zany antics of Gotham’s Clown Princess of Crime.
Harley, fresh after a messy break-up with her former paramour, the Joker, won’t be flying solo however, and this year’s film will see Harley forge some unlikely friendships as she seeks to save the life of a young girl who has had a death’s mark placed on her head by one of Gotham’s most dangerous crime lords.
So strap in and buckle up, comic book fans; we’re about to take a look at what we can expect from next month’s release, and knowing Dr. Quinzel, who will also be the one narrating the film, it’s likely to be a wild and unpredictable ride.
Who are the Birds of Prey?
The Birds of Prey is an all-female DC superhero team who first made their comic book debut in 1996. Over the years their team makeup has varied, though the core team has typically focused on a partnership between Black Canary and Barbara Gordon a.k.a. Oracle (daughter of Gotham Police Commissioner Jim Gordon, and the first Batgirl prior to being paralysed by the Joker).
Taking on the mantle of Black Canary is True Blood and Friday Night Light’s Jurnee Smollett-Bell, and whilst Barbara Gordon does not appear to be playing a role in this particular iteration of the team, another future Batgirl, Cassandra “Cass” Cain (played by Ella Jay Basco), will appear as the young girl who is being protected by Harley and her new friends.
Also joining the team is the Huntress (played by Scott Pilgrim vs. The World and 10 Cloverfield Lane’s Mary Elizabeth Winstead), the daughter of Mafioso Franco Bertinelli who becomes a crossbow-wielding vigilante, and disgruntled former Gotham City Police Detective Renee Montoya (played by The Dead Don’t Die’s Rosie Perez). Interestingly, Montoya’s character shares something else in common with Ms. Harley Quinn, having also been originally created in 1992 for the Batman: The Animated Series.
What are the stakes?
As if going through a messy breakup with her Puddin’ Mr. J wasn’t enough, Harley and her friends will have to contend with not one but two of Gotham’s most dangerous criminals throughout the course of the film. Assuming the role of one of Batman’s most sadistic villains, Roman Sionis a.k.a. Black Mask is none other than fan-favourite Ewan McGregor.
When a young Cassandra Cain becomes the target of the Black Mask’s attention, she finds herself being pursued by the deranged serial killer, Victor Zsasz (played by Argo’s Chris Messina) who has a penchant for carving tally marks into his skin for each of his victims. With those two hot on her trail, it’s a good thing that the future Batgirl has Harley on her side!
Written by Bumblebee’s Christina Hodson, who is quickly becoming one of Hollywood’s most sought after screenwriters and is already linked with future DC films, The Flash and Batgirl, and directed by Cathy Yan, Birds of Prey (And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) is bound to be a box-office heavyweight.
Rumours are also floating around that, following the events of this film, DC is planning to reunite Harley with her regular comic book team in a big-screen adaptation of the Gotham City Sirens. She is also confirmed to appear in James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad, due for release in 2021.
Birds of Prey (And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) releases in cinemas on February 6, 2020.
Check out the full-length trailer.