What you need to know
- "Birds of Prey and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn" is getting shortened to simply "Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey".
- The move comes after poor opening weekend performance.
- The title change is reflected at box office ticket sites and at theaters.
Birds of Prey and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn is getting shortened to a much search-friendlier term, according to what a Warner Bros. representative told The Verge. That new title is simply Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey, which should be significantly easier for audiences to identify when heading to the box office. You'll find this new title making an appearance at box offices everywhere, but don't expect the posters outside to change much. The opening weekend of Birds of Prey wasn't so swell, generating only $33 million domestically, which fell $20 million short of the $50-55 million expected.
While that performance isn't terribly surprising given past D.C. films poor ratings, Birds of Prey has received significantly better ratings than past movies and plays off Margot Robbie's stellar performance of the famed villain in 2016's Suicide Squad. Critics of the movie's financial performance said the title was too ambiguous, the trailers not edgy enough, and the marketing unclear. Warner Bros. hopes that the name change will be the beginning of success for the film as it moves into its second box office week for Valentine's weekend.
Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey follows the story of Harley Quinn as she manages her breakup with The Joker, causing a big target to be placed on her head. In true Gotham form, the villains get crazier and more insane as the story flows, including appearances by crime boss Black Mask, his right-hand man, Victor Zsasz, and several other notable characters. Harley evens out the odds by employing the assistance of three characters that are likely unknown to theatrical audiences; Black Canary, Huntress, and Renee Montoya.
Warner Bros. has had a difficult time making the D.C. Universe as successful as the Marvel Cinematic Universe. From bad decisions in the board room to poor direction for films, there regularly seems to be a problem for theatrical releases of beloved D.C. Universe characters.
While the title change for Harley Quinn is unprecedented for a D.C. Universe film, it's the second major film in recent Warner Bros. history to receive such a treatment. Edge of Tomorrow received a subtitle of Live, Die, Repeat after it left theaters, and we've even seen movies like Cats: The Movie receive patches after release to enhance the visuals.
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