Harley Quinn co-creator Paul Dini says he loves the Birds of Prey movie title. Margot Robbie took to Instagram this week to unveil the title - Birds of Prey (And The Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) - but most people thought it was a joke, until Warner Bros. confirmed it's the real deal.
Birds of Prey is a spinoff of David Ayer's Suicide Squad DC comic book movie and features Robbie back in the role of Harley Quinn. She is joined in the film's cast by DC movie newcomers Mary Elizabeth Winstead as Helena Bertinelli/Huntress and June Smollett-Bell as Dinah Lance/Black Canary. Winstead recently confirmed that Birds of Prey starts filming next January, which is close enough now (two months, give or take) that it explains why Robbie and WB went ahead and announced the movie's full title.
Dini, who created Harley Quinn for Batman: The Animated Series with Bruce Timm back in 1992, has since posted a message about the Birds of Prey movie title on his Facebook page. As it turns out, the writer heartily approves of the title and feels it's in character for Harley. Here is his statement on the matter:
I love the new movie title because I often have Harley scribble nonsense and wacky [thoughts] all over things, like her therapist's pad, or my introduction to the Sirens book. So this subtitle reads as classic Quinnsanity to me. One more thing to be thankful about this week.
As noted by Dini, Harley has never been one for convention and Birds of Prey's quirky title is something that, in her mind, probably would seem like a perfectly reasonable thing. The title also suggests that Christina Hodson's Birds of Prey script will focus heavily on Harley's efforts to "emancipate" herself from her toxic relationships, especially her romance with the Joker (Jared Leto). Whereas Suicide Squad's theatrical cut was criticized for romanticizing the Harley Quinn and Joker's typically abusive dynamic, the full title for Birds of Prey makes it clear that director Cathy Yan's spinoff is about Harley realizing that her connection to "Mr. Jay" is unhealthy and forming a mutually beneficial sisterhood with her fellow antiheroines, instead.
That being said, it's also obvious that WB wanted to include "Harley Quinn" in the Birds of Prey movie title in some way, in order to make it more brand-friendly and easy to sell to people who have no idea who the Birds of Prey even are. While there were surely easier ways to do that (like, calling it Harley Quinn & the Birds of Prey instead), the film's creatives elected to take an approach that - hate it or love it - has won Dini's approval and does feel pretty Quinn-esque. Still, one imagines that like other extra-long movie titles (be it Rogue One: A Star Wars Story or Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice), most people will probably refer to it as simply Birds of Prey and leave it at that.
Source: Paul Dini
- Aquaman (2018) release date: Dec 21, 2018
- Shazam! (2019) release date: Apr 05, 2019
- Joker (2019) release date: Oct 04, 2019
- Birds of Prey (And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) (2020) release date: Feb 07, 2020
- Wonder Woman 1984 (2020) release date: Jun 05, 2020