Last year’s

The Gulf Today - Panorama - - COVER STORY -

(Asher An­gel) who, by shout­ing Shazam!, can turn into an adult su­per­hero (Zachary Levi).

Shazam! is an un­de­ni­able risk, es­pe­cially when the DCEU is yet to find its foot­ing. But it will be fol­lowed by a safer bet: Birds of Prey (and the Fantab­u­lous Eman­ci­pa­tion of one Harley Quinn).

The key bit of that baf­fling ti­tle is ‘Harley Quinn’ — the char­ac­ter Mar­got Rob­bie played in Sui­cide Squad. The Joker ’s psy­chotic lover, Harley Quinn proved im­mensely pop­u­lar, even when au­di­ences had lit­tle pa­tience for the film she was star­ring in. It’s clear the stu­dio is try­ing to find her a bet­ter ve­hi­cle — or four. Warner Bros has placed an im­mense amount of faith in Rob­bie, and her abil­ity to draw in au­di­ences, with sev­eral Harley Quinn movies al­ready an­nounced.

First up, Birds of

Prey (due for re­lease in 2020) will team her up with Mary El­iz­a­beth Win­stead’s Hun­tress, Jurnee Smol­lett-bell’s Black Ca­nary, Rosie Perez’s Re­nee Mon­toya, and Ella Jay Basco’s Cas­san­dra Cain. Promis­ingly, the film is led by some gen­uinely ex­cit­ing cre­ative tal­ent: Cathy Yan, who made a splash at Sun­dance this year with her di­rec­to­rial de­but, the off­beat com­edy Dead Pigs. Rob­bie was adamant that she wanted a fe­male di­rec­tor on board, and it’s promis­ing to see the stu­dio recog­nise that women-led projects are not only de­sired by au­di­ences, but that they’re of­ten able to turn a tidy profit, too.

Birds of Prey may be the stu­dio’s most cru­cial test, given the cen­tral role Rob­bie is set to play in its fu­ture: she will also star in Sui­cide Squad 2, Gotham City Sirens (a team-up of Harley, Cat­woman, and Poi­son Ivy), and Harley Quinn vs The Joker. If Birds of Prey floun­ders, then the DCEU may be in more trou­ble than ever.

At least they have a safe bet in Won­der Woman 1984: Patty Jenk­ins re­turns to di­rect this se­quel, and Gal

Gadot is back as the lead, along­side Kris­ten Wiig as new vil­lain Chee­tah. Ex­pec­ta­tions are high, but with so much re­turn­ing tal­ent, there’s no rea­son to be con­cerned.

Lit­tle is cer­tain, how­ever, about the fates of Won­der Woman’s fel­low Jus­tice League

Jus­tice League

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UAE

© PressReader. All rights reserved.