The DC live-action universe has had a fascinating tenure in theaters, full of both peaks and valleys. But following a rocky start, Warner Bros. seems to have found its stride with its recent blockbusters. David Ayer's Suicide Squad was a critical failure when it arrived in 2016, but it made a ton of money and even won an Oscar. The villain-centric movie also introduced Margot Robbie's Harley Quinn to audiences, with the actress reprising her role for two more upcoming DC movies. The first is Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn), and Robbie recently explained how filmmaker Cathy Yan got the coveted director gig.
After stealing the show with Suicide Squad, Warner Bros. and Margot Robbie got especially invested in the character's future on the big screen. Robbie is producing Birds of Prey, and will also play the part in James Gunn's The Suicide Squad. As a producer, Robbie had a say in who would direct Birds of Prey and she just revealed how Cathy Yan managed to stand out and get the job. As she put it,
She spoke to the aesthetic color palette, how she wanted to shoot action, how she wanted costume design to be reflective of the characters’ personalities. It was perfect.
It looks like Cathy Yan wanted to bring something unique to the superhero genre. And it was her visual language that stood out the most prior to being hired. So it sounds like Birds of Prey is going to have a brand new look, which is evident in the movie's first trailers.
Margot Robbie's comments to Variety are sure to excite DC fans, who can't wait to see Harley Quinn in another big screen adventure. While she was one of the biggest characters in Suicide Squad, audiences should get a much more intimate peak into Harley's POV with Birds of Prey. As the long subtitle suggests, the most is very much from her point of view, giving the Batman villain some girlfriends to collaborate with following a break up with Joker.
As such, we should expect Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) to be a totally different movie than David Ayer's Suicide Squad. Cathy Yan is clearly particular about establishing the movie's unique visuals, which are influenced by the motley crew of characters, and Harley's fractured psyche. Her specificity with comics was evident from the first test footage, which showed the cast glad in colorful costumes that meld together a comic book sensibility and realism.
Birds of Prey has the chance to be a star making moment for Cathy Yan, as its her first major studio movie. The upcoming blockbuster is also notable for having female writers, and producers and crew members, breaking new ground for the DC Extended Universe. And we'll see more of Margot Robbie's Harley in James Gunn's The Suicide Squad, which is filming now.
Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) will arrive in theaters on February 7th. In the meantime, check out our 2020 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.