Birds of Prey director Cathy Yan reveals how the Joker affected Harley Quinn’s story

Margot Robbie's character returns in 2020

Clémence Michallon
New York
Friday 20 December 2019 20:13
Birds of Prey (2020) - trailer

The director of Birds of Prey has opened up about the Joker’s impact on Harley Quinn’s story.

Cathy Yan, the filmmaker behind the DC Comics film, told Screenrant that while the character isn’t portrayed in the movie, his influence remains palpable. Quinn is portrayed in Birds of Prey as the emancipated ex of the Joker, portrayed in the 2016 Suicide Squad by Jared Leto. Margot Robbie played Quinn in that movie and is reprising the role in Birds of Prey.

Yan explained that she was interested in exploring the “duality” of Quinn’s character, who was known as Dr Harleen Frances Quinzel before her meeting with the Joker and her subsequent transformation.

“Both sides of her are there, and she’s still very much the smart doctor that she once was,” the filmmaker said.

“She’s still capable of armchair diagnosing anyone – we say that’s part of her superpower. But then she can be so easily manipulated and has really low self-esteem and has all of the issues that Joker really brought out in her.”

Yan added that she saw Birds of Prey as a “great opportunity” to “dive deeper” into Quinn’s psyche.

Birds of Prey will see Quinn join forces with three other female characters portrayed by Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Jurnee Smollett-Bell, and Rosie Perez.

Chris Messina, Ewan McGregor, Ali Wong and Ella Jay Basco have also joined the cast.

Birds of Prey will be released on 7 February 2020.

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