A new teaser trailer for Birds of Prey has offered up the first full view of the core cast of the upcoming superhero movie. The brief video rapidly showcases the film’s heroes and villains, and it seems like not all of the characters are in their most familiar forms from the comics.
First seeing life as a series of one-shot comics focused on the partnership between the heroines Black Canary and Oracle, the first Birds of Prey monthly series was published by DC Comics in 1999. Most comic fans agree the series did not truly take off, however, until 2003 when writer Gail Simone revamped the book and expanded the team to include Lady Blackhawk and Huntress, with a rotating team of DC Comics’ superheroines joining the action as needed. The upcoming film, Birds of Prey (And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) will be altering the team’s origins somewhat for the DCEU, with Harley gathering a group of the same heroes to protect a young girl named Cassandra Cain.
The following breakdown will go through the Birds of Prey trailer, second by second, and explain all the hidden little Easter Eggs. The characters pictured will be identified and their backstories from the comics explained. There will also be a few theories as to what to expect from the upcoming movie.
- This Page: Birds of Prey Character Reveals From The Teaser
- Page 2: Birds of Prey Cast & Character Designs
12. Harley Quinn’s Mallet Is Back In Birds of Prey
The trailer opens with an ankle-high glimpse of a woman we presume is Harley Quinn, based on her choice of sparkly red and purple socks and the fact that she’s wielding Harley’s weapon of choice – a large mallet. The colorful weapon looks like a traditional clown hammer but there’s no padding in the head of this prop. This mallet is quite real and Harley can effectively bash in the brains of anyone who gets in her way with it.
11. Huntress’s Crossbow (And Cloak) In Birds of Prey
The next shot in the Birds of Prey teaser reveals a woman in a long dark coat holding a crossbow. This is Helena Bertinelli, aka The Huntress, who will be played by Mary Elizabeth Winstead. The last surviving daughter of one the five families that made up Gotham City’s Mafia, Helena devoted her life to bringing down the mobsters who killed her family and waging a war on criminals in general. While one might think this would make her a firm ally of Batman, who also lost his family to crime, he considers Huntress to be little better than the criminals she hunts, as Bertinelli had no qualms about killing her prey.
10. Black Canary’s Drinking Is In Birds Of Prey
The next shot of the Birds of Prey costume test shows a woman in silhouette, chugging from a liquor bottle. While it is unclear who this is from the image, the order of the scenes suggest that it might be Black Canary. In the comics, Black Canary has a reputation for being a hard-drinking riot grrrl and this image would fit her personality in the Rebirth era of DC Comics. The light silhouetting her also seems to be coming from a spotlight, alluding that she’s on a stage, which would again fit Black Canary’s rock star background in the current comics.
9. Cassandra Cain Has A Cast In Birds of Prey
The next scene shows a close-up of a cast on a young girl’s arm, which has been decorated with a number of playing card designs as well as a number of colorful profanities. The shot doesn’t make clear who the cast belongs to at this point, but we will later see that it is on the arm of Cassandra Cain.
8. Harley Quinn As Bat Girl?
The following Birds of Prey scene shows a woman clutching a baseball bat. We don’t see the woman’s face, but this is the same baseball bat that Harley Quinn wielded in Suicide Squad – a fact that is not immediately obvious, as the side we can see shows a series of random scribbling rather than the words “GOOD NIGHT.” As such, it could be Harley Quinn, although she’s wearing yellow and purple and has a distinctive golden belt. Given that purple and yellow are the traditional costume colors of Batgirl, could this be Harley’s attempt at becoming a new Bat-Girl… complete with her own bat?
Page 2 of 2: Birds of Prey Cast & Character Designs
7. Jurnee Smollett-Bell As Black Canary
The rapid-fire montage of images which follows gives us a close-up on Black Canary, as played by Jurnee Smollett-Bell in Birds of Prey, standing at a microphone. In the modern DC Comics universe, Black Canary is a rock star in her secret identity, having decided to hide in plain sight after a lifetime working in secret as a spy for ARGUS and the covert-ops group Team 7. Armed with a sonic scream, she can literally bring the house down with her voice. Despite her success as a punk rocker, she prefers performing old-fashioned torch songs and she seems to be dressed to perform one here.
6. Mary Elizabeth Winstead As Huntress
The montage also gives us a better view of Huntress. While not quite as skimpy as the 2002 redesign of her costume for the Batman: Hush storyline, we do see that she has a bared belly. The montage suggests that Huntress may have multiple costumes as the movie progresses, as there is no sign of her long cape from the opening scene where we first see her crossbow. There is also a quick flash where we see a hooded woman holding a crossbow in the montage.
5. Rosie Perez As Renee Montoya
First introduced in the Batman: The Animated Series cartoon that also introduced Harley Quinn, Rene Montoya is another recent introduction to the mythology of Batman whose development has moved in unexpected directions since her first appearance. Played by Rosie Perez, Montoya was a beat cop who worked her way through the ranks of the Gotham City Police Department to become a detective. A closeted lesbian who had a relationship with socialite Kate Kane before she became Batwoman, Rene would later take up a vigilante’s mantle for herself, donning Vic Sage’s mask to become the second Question. It is unknown how much of this background may be worked into Birds of Prey, but even as a rookie cop Rene Montoya was no one to be trifled with.
4. Ewan McGregor as Black Mask
The Birds of Prey montage provides two different glimpses of Ewan McGregor as Black Mask. In the first, he is wearing a pair of gold-rimmed glasses, with his hands in his pockets while wearing a suit. The second scene is a close-up of Ewan McGregor, without the glasses. In the comics, Black Mask is the nom de plume of Roman Sionis – a scion of an old-money Gotham City family, who became obsessed with masks and turned to a life of crime after his poor business sense ruined his father’s cosmetics firm.
3. Chris Messina As Victor Zsasz
The montage also offers the first look at Chris Messina as Victor Zsasz. Another child of Gotham City’s upper-class, Zsasz grew bored with the life of the idle rich and sought excitement in gambling. After losing everything he owned and realizing the pointlessness of his own existence, Zsasz was going to attempt suicide by throwing himself off a bridge. He was stopped a homeless man, who attempted to extort money from him with a knife. Feeling alive for the first time in months, Zsasz fought back, killed the man, and came to feel that he had been chosen to “save” other people by ending their pointless existences. Zsasz became a serial killer and began keeping a running tally of all the people he had killed, cutting himself every time he “freed” a new unfortunate.
2. Ella Jay Basco As Cassandra Cain
The montage gives us a better shot of Cassandra Cain (in Birds of Prey played by Ella Jay Basco) who is revealed as the girl with the cast from earlier in the trailer. Currently fighting crime under the codename Orphan in the Batman comics, Cassandra Cain is the daughter of the assassins David Cain and Lady Shiva. Trained by her father from birth in the arts of killing, David Cain did not speak to his daughter, teaching her no language but violence. This caused Cassandra to develop a superhuman gift for reading body language. Miraculously, Cassandra somehow developed her own independent sense of morality and refused to kill when her father took her on her first assassination attempt. She was later discovered by Barbara Gordon, who offered Cassandra a better way to live.
1. Harley Quinn’s New Birds Of Prey Outfit
The final scene of the Birds of Prey trailer shows Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, dancing around with a drink in one hand. Clad in a sparkly jacket with a hot pink top and orange suspenders, Robbie looks as colorful and cheerful as Harley Quinn when she’s unwinding in the comics. The montage concludes, however, with a picture of Harley looking very serious, even as she’s sucking on a lollipop.