Gail Simone is perhaps the writer most closely associated with the DC property ‘Birds of Prey’, which is the latest concept to get the big-screen treatment. With a script by Christina Hodson, Cathy Yan directed the upcoming flick which stars Margot Robbie, reprising her role as Harley Quinn from 2016’s ‘Suicide Squad’, along with Mary Elizabeth Winstead as The Huntress/Helena Bertinelli, Jurnee Smollett-Bell as Black Canary/Dinah Lance, Rosie Perez as Gotham City PD’s Renee Montoya, Ella Jay Basco as Cassandra Cain, Ewan McGregor as Black Mask, Chris Messina as Victor Zsasz, and Ali Wong in an undisclosed role.
This lineup doesn’t quite reflect the comic book that Simone wrote, however. For the bulk of her run, the Birds of Prey were Black Canary and Barbara Gordon, who, at that time, was bound to a wheelchair and operating as Oracle, the computer hacker extraordinaire of the DC Universe. Barbara remained as Canary’s partner even after she regained the use of her legs and became Batgirl again. The Birds of Prey were sometimes joined by others, with The Huntress being the most notable. But Simone laments that Barbara Gordon isn’t involved in the ‘Birds of Prey’ movie at all, considering that she was literally half the team for years.
In a tweet that has since been deleted, Simone wrote:
“I am a little bummed about Barbara but she is getting a LOT of love coming soon in other DC movies, so… “
Not surprisingly, it looks as though DC Comics/Warner Brothers ordered her to take the post down, as it reveals details about their future plans that have not been revealed.
Luckily a fan posted a reply that has not been deleted, which gives a clue about Simone’s earlier reports:
@GailSimone thanks for sharing the story about meeting the BoP cast (and your opinion of the movie while at it)! i admit i was super bummed that barbara isn’t in it, but seeing someone i admire having such a positive view on the new take made me curious to see for myself :)
— jinecologista (@durmstrangay) October 6, 2019
It’s not a secret that Warner Brothers has (or had) a ‘Batgirl’ movie in the works, with Hodson writing that script. So that could be what Simone was referencing.
Rumor has it, the ‘Batgirl’ movie has been temporarily shelved to allow Matt Reeves’ ‘The Batman’ to potentially reboot that character. If ‘The Batman’ does well, ‘Batgirl’ will likely be retooled to fit Reeves’ take.
It was assumed that Reeves’ Batman, played by Robert Pattinson, was essentially a younger version of the same Batman that Ben Affleck played in ‘Batman V Superman’, ‘Suicide Squad’, and ‘Justice League’, but more and more, it looks as though this movie will be completely unrelated to the previous DC movies.
It gets a little mind-bending. Harley Quinn exists in the same movie universe as Affleck’s Batman, so ‘Birds of Prey’ obviously takes place in the same continuity. But if Warner Brothers decides to set ‘Batgirl’ in the same universe as ‘The Batman’, then Barbara Gordon will not be connected to the ‘Birds of Prey’.
If Jeffrey Wright signs on as Commissioner Gordon, as he is expected to, then that would mean that Barbara Gordon, his daughter, will be a woman of color. It wouldn’t be the first time, as Rosario Dawson voiced Batgirl in ‘The LEGO Batman’ movie, in which the character was Latina. Héctor Elizondo voiced her father, Commissioner Gordon.
Check back for updates as they arrive.
‘Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) is set to open on February 7, 2020.
Matt Reeves’ ‘The Batman’ hits theaters on June 25, 2021.