Harley Quinn: Birds Of Prey Director Reveals The Origin Of That Viral Hair Tie Moment

Black Canary in Birds of Prey

After a shaky beginning, the DC Extended Universe seems to have come into its own. The shared universe has largely strayed away from crossover-heavy titles, instead allowing each new release to be made with a unique director's POV. The new retitled Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey is certainly no exception, as Cathy Yan's vision is exactly what landed her the job. And now Yan has explained the origin of the film's viral hair tie moment from the R-rated movie.

The titular Birds of Prey assemble in the movie's third act, when Black Mask's forces descend on the various femme fatales who are currently threatening his takeover of Gotham City. During the epic funhouse final fight, Black Canary gets frustrated with her hair obscuring her vision in battle. That's when Harley skates over and gives her a hair tie, in a moment that quickly went viral for its hilarious realism. Director Cathy Yan recently revealed the origin of Birds of Prey's hair tie toss, saying:

Yeah, my sister and I always joke about the fact that women in superhero movies — or action movies generally — are always going into battle or doing this big crazy epic thing with beautiful flowing hair perfectly quaffed, when both of us wouldn’t even consider eating a sandwich with our hair untied. So, yeah, it had to go in there.

It looks like Cathy Yan enjoys action movies like the rest of us. Although when she was in the audience, Yan and her sister often joke about the perfect hair of female characters during action sequences. That's why she decided to address that very plot hole in her own blockbuster, Birds of Prey.

Cathy Yan's comments to THR show how much the filmmaker put her own experience into Birds of Prey. Her big DC debut is notable for having women working across all departments. It was directed, written, and produced by women. This allowed for the female perspective to truly have a voice, and small moments like the hair tie exchange bring a sense of subtle reality to an otherwise heightened world.

You can check out the quick moment from Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey below.

Birds of Prey's big final battle was super satisfying, with dizzying action and laughs along the way. Each member of the team had a vastly different fighting style, which was highlighted when battling Black Mask's countless thugs. The women worked well together with limited resources, with moments of collaboration showing how well they truly worked together. And as a result, the Birds of Prey took flight for the first time.

Unfortunately, Birds of Prey had a disappointing opening weekend in theaters. While it got the #1 spot, it was the worst DCEU opener yet. Warner Bros. since changed the film's name to Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey, believing that a marketing error might have contributed to its ticket sales. We'll just have to see how much money the blockbuster makes, and if a sequel hapens.

Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey is in theaters now. Be sure to check out our 2020 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Graduated with degrees theater and literature from Ramapo College of New Jersey. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid. He's particularly proud of covering horror franchises like Scream and Halloween, as well as movie musicals like West Side Story. Favorite interviews include Steven Spielberg, Spike Lee, Jamie Lee Curtis, and more.