The long awaited first trailer for Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) is finally here and with it we have our first look at a post-Suicide Squad Harley, and a few glimpses at the new characters that will be joining her. In truth, the entire trailer is almost entirely focused on Margot Robbie's character, but one thing seems clear, there will be no Joker in this one.
The trailer does catch us up on what's going on with Harley and her "puddin'" but with knives being thrown at a dart board drawing of Joker by Harley, it's clear that the pair are on the outs. The voice over says that Harley and Joker broke up. It seems quite clear that Harley's attention will be elsewhere for the duration of the film, so it's unlikely that Jared Leto's Suicide Squad Joker is going to get much more of a mention than that in the new movie.
There were few if any indications that Jared Leto would be appearing in Birds of Prey, even in a cameo capacity, but with the character not appearing in the one place where it would have made sense, the question has to be asked, will we ever see that Joker again? Leto has said he'd be willing to play the role in the future, but will he get the chance?
The Joker seems to be getting written off pretty significantly here. The drawing of Joker that we see in the trailer doesn't even resemble the version of the character Leto played. Is it even supposed to be the same guy?
This, combined with the fact that Harley Quinn is set to be a bigger part of the future of the DCEU than Joker, the upcoming Joker movie is taking place in a separate universe, and the forthcoming Batman movie is either going to be a prequel, or also set outside the DC universe, and there doesn't seem to be much place for Jared Leto to show up.
One of the many projects that were in play for Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn following her Suicide Squad success there was a movie that would have co-starred Robbie and Jared Leto in a Joker & Harley duo movie, but that project appears to have died on the vine. The only other movie where we know we'll see Harley Quinn at this point is the James Gunn led The Suicide Squad. And there's no indication we'll see Leto there either.
Still Jared Leto's version of the character is still the DCEU's official Joker as far as we know, and if the universe continues forward, not seeing the Joker ever again seems unlikely. He's the single most popular villain DC has ever created, as shown by the fact that he's the first to get his own solo movie.
Birds of Prey is clearly Harley Quinn's time to shine. If the Joker will ever be back, in her life or separately, we'll just have to wait and see.