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Harley Quinn finally made her cinematic debut back in 2016 with Suicide Squad, and while there are plans for her to return alongside the other Task Force X members in Suicide Squad 2, Margot Robbie is next expected to reprise the clownish character in Birds of Prey, which she's also producing. Ever since Cathy Yan was hired to direct the Birds of Prey movie, the project has been on the fast track, and the latest update is that longtime Batman adversary Roman Sionis, a.k.a. Black Mask, will reportedly serve as Birds of Prey's main antagonist.
Ever since he debuted in 1985's Batman #386, Black Mask has been one of the Caped Crusader's most distinctive enemies, treading the line between mob boss and colorful villain as he rules over Gotham City's criminal underworld. Now word's come in that he'll make his first big screen appearance in Birds of Prey, and while no specific details about his DC Extended Universe incarnation were revealed, at the very least we can expect him to be someone high up in Gotham's criminal hierarchy who has a fascination with masks. The Wrap's report also reiterates that Harley Quinn will be joined in Birds of Prey by Black Canary, Huntress, Renee Montoya and Cassandra Cain, only rather than being an adult superhero, Cassandra is said to be "young."
This isn't the first time that it's been indicted Black Mask could be introduced to the DCEU. Back in early 2017, Suicide Squad director David Ayer hinted that Black Mask would show up in Gotham City Sirens, another movie set to star Harley Quinn. But a lot has changed behind the scenes with the DCEU since then, and it's possible that it was decided that he would be a better fit for Birds of Prey. In the comics, Black Mask doesn't boast any special abilities, instead relying on his hand-to-hand combat skills and firearms, although in the New 52 continuity, he is able to mind control the minions who wear his special masks through his own mask. Black Mask's appearances outside the comics include Batman: The Brave and the Bold, Batman: Under the Red Hood and Batman: Arkham Origins.
So far all that's been revealed about Birds of Prey's story so far is that it's "centered around a revolving group of female heroes and villains. In the comics, the Birds of Prey's core members are Batgirl, Black Canary and Huntress. Although Barbara Gordon, the original Batgirl, wasn't mentioned in the report, it's previously been rumored that she'll be introduced in Birds of Prey before leading her own movie, meaning that the adolescent Cassandra Cain wouldn't need to don a costume. Regardless, with Harley Quinn, Renee Montoya and possibly other well-known female DC characters popping up, it doesn't sound like this cast will in any way be small.
Birds of Prey doesn't have a set release date yet, so stay tuned to CinemaBlend for more updates on its progress. In the meantime, look through our DC movies guide to find out what other DCEU projects are in development.