Despite all the question marks hanging over Warner’s DC film slate, one area where the studio does seem confident is that of Harley Quinn. The character, who was portrayed by Margot Robbie for her live action debut in ‘Suicide Squad‘, has since been tapped for a number of follow up/spin off films. This includes a ‘Gotham City Sirens‘ film, an untitled Joker/Harley movie, and a ‘Birds of Prey’ adaptation.
Of those, the latter seems the most likely to actually happen (especially given how easy it is to be cynical about the DC slate), if only because a director (namely, Cathy Yan) is attached and filming is scheduled for later this year. But in addition to these more practical signs, another reason the film is likely to see the light of day is simply that its star is invested in the project and Warner clearly wants to keep Harley on the big screen. As Robbie explained in a conversation with Collider, this is a project she’s been pursuing for almost as long as she’s been involved with DC films:
“I pitched the idea of an R-rated girl gang film including Harley, because I was like, “Harley needs friends.” Harley loves interacting with people, so don’t ever make her do a standalone film. She’s got to be with other people, it should be a girl gang. I wasn’t seeing enough girl gangs on screen, especially in the action space. So that was always a big part of it.”
According to Robbie, the idea of a Harley Quinn film as an ensemble piece is an important aspect of the film. But there’s another thing that was equally important to the actress (who is also serving as a producer), namely ensuring that there was plenty of female talent behind the camera. As Robbie explains:
“And then of course having a female director to tell that story. And giving a female director the chance to do big budget stuff. They always get “Here’s the tiny little film…” I was like, “I love action. I love action films. I’m a girl. What, are we meant to only like a specific thing?” So it was hugely important to find a female director for this, if possible. But at the end of the day – male, female – the best director gets the job and Cathy was the best director.”
Not only is Cathy Yan (of ‘Dead Pigs’ fame) attached to direct, the script is to be penned by Christina Hodson, who is also working on ‘Bumblebee’, the first of the ‘Transformers’ spinoff films. This abundance of female perspectives (including the film’s director, writer, and star/producer) can only be a net positive. After all, while Margot Robbie’s performance was one of the few things in ‘Suicide Squad’ that genuinely worked, the film’s handling of her character (like most other things about ‘Suicide Squad’) would have undoubtedly benefitted from a creative voice less inclined toward gritty macho posturing than David Ayer’s.
What do you think of Margot Robbie’s concept for a Harley Quinn film? Is there an approach you’d prefer? Let us know in the comments, and be sure to check back with ScienceFiction.com for more on this and other DC films as it becomes available!