It would be doing a disservice to the rest of the ensemble cast to call Birds of Prey a Harley Quinn solo movie, but Margot Robbie’s fan favorite character was very much the lead personality and driving force behind the narrative. The actress also produced the comic book blockbuster and eventually had her character’s name placed at the forefront of the marketing when a weak box office opening saw Warner Bros. rebrand the R-rated actioner as Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey.
Like several of her DCEU contemporaries, most notably Henry Cavill and Jared Leto, Robbie was also set to reprise her role in at least a couple of projects that never made it out of development hell. David Ayer’s Gotham City Sirens was ultimately abandoned in favor of Birds of Prey after Suicide Squad was greeted with a largely apathetic shrug; that effect additionally saw a planned spinoff with Leto’s Joker fall by the wayside.
Birds of Prey may have flopped at the box office, though it almost instantly gained a new life as a cult favorite, Thankfully, Robbie will be back on our screens next month when she takes top billing in James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad. The filmmaker admitted he’d be more than game for a standalone Harley-driven effort, but the actress offered in a new interview that she works better as part of a team.
“Something I noticed about Harley from the start is she’s always going to have more fun when she’s in a group dynamic. I’ve always said putting Harley on her own would be like putting a kid on a playground on their own. It’s never going to be as fun as when it’s populated with other kids to play with. When she’s in a group you’re always going to see the most come out of her personality because she’s got people to play with and pick apart or fall in love with or backstab or whatever. She’s always decided how she feels about the people around her and then acts accordingly, which is always unpredictable.”
It’s definitely a lot more entertaining to see the various figures around Harley Quinn react to her behavior and personality than it would be if she were a more straightforward protagonist. Based on Birds of Prey losing money for the studio, ensemble-based outings are her most likely destinations for the foreseeable future as it is, so it’ll all work out in the end.