'Birds of Prey': Margot Robbie and director Cathy Yan reveal how the movie connects to 'Suicide Squad'

We may have been introduced to Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn in David Ayer’s Suicide Squad in 2016, but new spinoff movie ‘Birds of Prey and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn’ doesn’t bare much connection to the previous film, its cast and director have revealed to Yahoo Movies. 

Margot Robbie attending the world premiere of Birds of Prey and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn, held at the BFI IMAX, London. (Photo by Matt Crossick/PA Images via Getty Images)

As Margot Robbie explained in an interview with Yahoo Movies about the new film, “It’s separate. In my mind, as an actor, I’ve mapped out chronologically what’s happened in between the couple of years where she would’ve been on that mission, to this day in Gotham, and also the next couple of years that pass, when we’ll see her in the next ‘Suicide Squad’ film.”

“So, in my head, I had to figure that out, just in order to play her, but it’s not something that audience members need to be aware of to understand. You don’t need to have seen ‘Suicide Squad’ to watch ‘Birds of Prey’,” Robbie told Yahoo.


 

‘Birds Of Prey’ follows Harley Quinn after the events of ‘Suicide Squad’, though none of the other characters from the super-team of DC comics antiheroes appear in the new movie. 

Instead, ‘Birds of Prey’ follows Harley Quinn after a literally explosive breakup with the Joker - who doesn’t appear in the movie - and finding herself in the process: the movie’s titular “Emancipation of One Harley Quinn”. Harley and the Joker’s breakup leaves Harley without the Batman baddie’s protection and with a target on her back, and so on the run from the worst of Gotham’s other villains - which leads her to team up with the new Birds of Prey gang of morally-questionable and totally-deadly lawbreaking heroines. 

Jurnee Smollett-Bell, Rosie Perez, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Margot Robbie and Ella Jay Brasco attending the world premiere of Birds of Prey and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn, held at the BFI IMAX, London.


Explaining the lack of connection to Suicide Squad, Robbie told Yahoo Movies, “It’s kind of like the comics, in that you can pick up, and leave off, and pick it up somewhere else - the comics are like that, depending on who’s authoring them. And the films are like that, depending on who’s directing them.” 

Director Cathy Yan explained to Yahoo Movies, “‘Suicide Squad’ is all about the relationship, in a way, which is great. It kind of goes into the origin story of her being Doctor Quinzell, a psychologist at Arkham Asylum.” 

Director Cathy Yan poses for photographers upon arrival at the world premiere of 'Birds of Prey' in London, Wednesday, Jan 29, 2020. (Photo by Joel C Ryan/Invision/AP)


“She ends up working with the Joker, she ends up falling in love with Joker,” Yan explains, of Harley as depicted in ‘Suicide Squad’, “They have that relationship and we pick up right from there.” 

But even though the movie follows on in a timeline from ‘Suicide Squad’, Yan revealed that she doesn’t necessarily picture Jared Leto’s Joker, from that film, as the one in this story. When asked who she pictured as the version of the Joker in ‘Birds of Prey’, she revealed, “For me, it mattered less, actually. It didn’t really matter which version of it. We pulled as much from ‘Suicide Squad’ as we did from version of the Joker in comic books as well, and we kind of kept it vague, because it’s really not about him. It’s about her.” 

- Birds of Prey and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn lands in cinemas on 7 February.