Birds of Prey has found its Huntress and Black Canary.
Actresses Mary Elizabeth Winstead and Jurnee Smollett-Bell have been tapped to join Margot Robbie in the upcoming DC superhero film. Winstead, from 10 Cloverfield Lane and Fargo, will play Huntress, while Smollett-Bell, from Friday Night Lights and Underground, is set to portray Black Canary.
Robbie, who will be reprising her 2016 Suicide Squad role as Harley Quinn, is also one of the film’s producers, along with Sue Kroll of Kroll & Co. Entertainment and Bryan Unkeless of Clubhouse Pictures.
According to reports, Birds of Prey will be set in a Gotham unprotected by Batman, with the superhero team facing off against a yet-to-be-revealed crime lord. In addition to Harley Quinn, Huntress and Black Canary, Birds of Prey will also reportedly feature Cassandra Cain and Renee Montoya.
In the comics, the core members of the Birds of Prey team often include Huntress and Black Canary, along with Batgirl (or Oracle). There is no indication that any iteration of Barbara Gordon will be appear in the movie.
A number of incarnations of Huntress have been portrayed in comic books, but the Birds of Prey version of Helena Bertinelli’s back story will reportedly involve being a former mafia princess who saw her whole family killed when she was younger.
Black Canary, aka Dinah Lance, is an expert fighter known for her ultrasonic scream called the canary cry in the comics.
Birds of Prey will be directed by Cathy Yan, the first Asian woman tapped to helm a big-budget superhero film in the DC universe. The screenplay is by Bumblebee writer Christina Hodson, who is also writing the Batgirl script for Warner Bros.
Birds of Prey is scheduled for a February 7, 2020, release.