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Suicide Squad: Margot Robbie nails the problem with Harley Quinn and The Joker's relationship

'I just didn’t understand how she could be such a badass and then fall to pieces over some guy'

Jess Denham@jess_denham
Friday 05 August 2016 11:56
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Margot Robbie and Jared Leto as Harley Quinn and The Joker in Suicide Squad
Margot Robbie and Jared Leto as Harley Quinn and The Joker in Suicide Squad

Margot Robbie has nailed the problem with her Suicide Squad character Harley Quinn’s relationship with The Joker.

The Australian actress plays the psychotic clown’s lover and accomplice in David Ayer’s supervillain movie, but found it difficult to get her head round comic book fans’ adoration for her.

“I just didn’t understand how she could be such a badass and then fall to pieces over some guy,” she told The Washington Post. “I found that really frustrating. Fans seem to really love that about her, that she has this complete devotion to a guy that treats her badly.”

To prepare for the major role, which sees her don hotpants so tiny that had to be digitally lengthened for international trailers, Robbie visited online forums to discover why fans loved the character so much. Her acting coach referred her to Fool for Love, a play about a dysfunctional couple, before she got about researching co-dependence.

“Once I could view it in those terms it suddenly made sense. I suddenly had so much empathy for Harley and after that it was all very straightforward,” she said. “It was fun after that.” Robbie added that she did not rehearse her scenes with Jared Leto, who plays The Joker, making the experience “very visceral and fitting for the relationship”.


The 26-year-old has defended herself from accusations that Harley is overly sexualised in Suicide Squad, arguing that she wears skimpy clothes because she enjoys doing so, not because she “wanted guys to look at her ass”.

Robbie did, however, admit that, “as Margot” she hated wearing the hotpants and tight T-shirt. “No I don’t like wearing that. I’m eating burgers at lunchtime and then you go do a scene where you’re hosed down and soaking wet in a white T-shirt, it’s so clingy and you’re self-conscious about it,” she told The New York Times recently.

Suicide Squad is in UK cinemas from today.

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