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(Suicide Squad is an Oscar award winning film... let that sink in for a few minutes. They won for best Costume Design.)
When it was first announced that the comic book series Suicide Squad was going to be made into a live-action movie, I was one of many that had no idea what that even was. (I grew up reading Marvel comics and watching DC cartoons like Batman and Superman).
I did my research on this film and saw it would feature the first big screen adaptation of Harley Quinn. I was sold then and there that this film would be amazing!
Harley Quinn is my favorite character in the DC Universe—right behind her are Black Canary, Green Arrow, and Lois Lane—and falling for her in the Batman animated series, I had high hopes she would be portrayed properly, and after all, we needed a new Harley who would be better than the one we got on the WB's failed series Birds of Prey, played by Mia Sara.
I kept up to date on the production as on set photos spilled through and from what I'd seen, my anticipation for this film grew bigger and I was as giddy as a kid seconds away from meeting with Santa Claus.
Then came the trailer that leaked in Comic Con, the same trailer Warner Brothers Studios was forced to release due to the leak.
The trailer was dark, funny, and the Joker (played by 30 Seconds to Mars vocalist and Oscar Award winner Jared Leto) was advertised in that trailer as being a huge part of it, so I was happy. After all, you couldn't have Harley Quinn in the movie without mentioning or portraying the Joker—that would be insane! (pun intended)
But once I got wind a few months later that Warner Bros. had the cast return for reshoots, I knew something was fishy.
The final trailer came out months prior to the film's release and it was nothing like the first trailer. We finally got to hear Margot Robbie's Harley Quinn voice and it wasn't my favorite HQ voice, but it was understandable why they didn't want her to have the high pitch squeaky Brooklyn accent. Can you imagine hearing that voice or let alone making that voice throughout a two hour film? Oy!
The trailer showed Batman, Joker, and the other Suicide Squad members in action, but let's be honest, I didn't care about the other actors or characters—even Will Smith didn't sell this movie. For me, it was all about Harley Quinn.
Before the movie even hit theaters, the action figures for the Squad were out in full force...
And once I got wind of spoiler reviews, I didn't hesitate to read those. When I read them, I expected this movie to be everything I imagined it would be! But for a comic fan like myself... it wasn't.
Harley Quinn and the Joker's Relationship
It was completely watered down!
I followed the production of this film and every time a new on set photo came out I was excited!
So when I saw the above image of Joker belittling Harley—as he normally does—I was expecting that part to be in the film. Unfortunately, they took out that scene entirely!
Instead of Harley getting yelled at when she is pulled up to the helicopter, Joker hugs and kisses her. Then their copter is hit by a missile that causes Harley to fall out, even though in many early screenings—before the reshoots—writers stated that Joker throws Harley out the copter, which explains why she takes off her "Puddin" choker in anger. It wasn't because he died, but because he wanted her to die.
With David Ayer (writer and director) claiming there are no "other versions of this film," I know he's a liar!
The edit they used of Joker presumably crashing to his death and Harley taking off her choker made no sense story wise! If she believed he was dead, she would've been looking for him at the site. Instead, she sits on a police car crying in anger.
Another scene that was cut was a scene that was only available on the Blu-ray version of the film, and that was the scene where Harleen Quinzel (Harley's real name) chases after Joker on her motorcycle, completely in love with him.
Let's have a look:
Yet the scene did in fact go on longer than that because these were leaked online:
The only explanation I could think of as why Warner Brothers Studio intervened and deleted these scenes would have to be because they didn't want to show a physically abusive relationship on the screen. I mean for crying out loud, they even made the movie PG-13, which is insane considering this is a group of villains!
The movie had potential to tell more stories and possibly do spin offs, but the only character who caught everyone's eyes was Harley Quinn.
Leto expressed his disdain with Warner Brothers Studios because he joined the movie with the pitch of being the main baddie, even promised more films... yet his scenes were cut.
My issue would be the fact that they portrayed the Harley and Joker romance as forbidden love, rather than the actual fact, which was how Joker was manipulative and abusive towards Harley.
This couple is toxic and insane and that's what made their mad love possible.
Margot Robbie (Harley Quinn) surprised me because most artists would portray a huge character on the big screens for checks and if it's not successful they move on. Or they star in it and have no idea who the character is (Ali Larter when she starred as Claire Redfield in Resident Evil Extinction and had no idea who Capcom was).
Robbie fell in love with Quinn's story and is about to take her, as well as us, on a wild ride.
It has been confirmed the new Harley Quinn movie will star her alongside the Birds of Prey and it will be titled:
Robbie is even producing it with her own production company.
For those who don’t know, the Birds of Prey is a group of badass women including Batgirl, Black Canary, and Huntress (as well as other heroines from time to time).
The official synopsis is:
"After splitting up with the Joker, Harley Quinn and three other female superheroes—Black Canary, Huntress, and Renee Montoya—come together to save the life of a little girl (Cassandra Cain) from an evil crime lord."
Huntress and Black Canary
Mary Elizabeth Winstead was cast to play Huntress and Jurnee Smollett-Bell was cast to play Black Canary.
I am a bit nervous about Black Canary because the show Arrow already ruined her, so I hope Robbie takes the appropriate time to mold one of my favorite characters and Smollett-Bell will hopefully kill it.
This film is set for a February 7, 2020 release date.
There is also word the script for Harley Quinn vs. The Joker is finished and it sees the crazy couple kidnapping Dr. Phil to get some very much needed therapy.
I don't think Robbie needs to focus on that Joker and Harley project since Jared Leto was cast to play the vampire character from Marvel named Morbius—and so far, it seems that she has a lot on her hands with her vision for this Birds of Prey film.
With Shazam! set to come out next year, I cannot wait to see how that film will change the dynamics of the DCEU movies.
Sure, we have The Flash, Wonder Woman 1984, and James Gunn set to write and direct a (rumored) Suicide Squad 2 coming out soon, but I'm excited to see the DC characters we haven't seen on the big screen yet.
With Christina Hodson (who wrote Bumblebee) gearing up to film the new Birds of Prey movie and Batgirl soon after, these might be enough for us to forget the mess that was Suicide Squad... hopefully.