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Margot Robbie Wanted 'Women Being Friends' On Screen With Birds Of Prey

'There was a general longing to see girls together'

The upcoming Birds of Prey is a zany, colorful exploration of Harley Quinn as more than just "Joker's girlfriend" or even a sidekick. It's her first, real emancipation from the toxic relationship we've seen her in for so many years, and as such she's seen living it up in the first footage we've seen of the film. Margot Robbie is trying something decidedly different.

She's also got her own "girl gang' at her side supporting her, including Huntress (Mary Elizabeth Winstead), Black Canary (Jurnee Smollett-Bell), and Renee Montoya (Rosie Perez). According to writer Christina Hodson, Robbie had a very clear vision for the film right from the start: women hanging out together.

"She really wanted to see Harley with girlfriends, Harley in a girl gang," Hodson told Variety. "Harley is such a naturally sociable character. And I think there was just a general longing to see girls together on screen — women being friends." Robbie's husband Tom Ackerley explained further that this desire stemmed from the group of friends she had in real life.

"She has a group of friends in the U.K.; she has a group of friends in Australia; she has a group of girlfriends here," he said. "They live fun and vivacious lives. And she was like, ‘I don’t see that on screen.’" And thus, the current Birds of Prey movie as we know it was born.

The movie will explore Harley's final breakup with the Joker, much like the DC animated series Harley Quinn has done in a more comedic way. Jared Leto's Joker himself won't be appearing in the film, Robbie confirmed during her Variety interview, though, which means the focus will be squarely on Harley and the girls. For many fans, the consensus will likely be "It's about time."

Birds of Prey is headed to theaters on February 8, 2020.