When a film fails to reach its expected output or outcome in the box office people start pointing fingers at others, especially if said film has been hyped a lot.
Such as the case for the Margot Robbie-led Birds of Prey movie by Warner Bros. When Suicide Squad came out, two things were glaringly obvious (besides Will Smith portraying Will Smith portraying Deadshot portraying Will Smith); Margot Robbie stole the show as Harley Quinn and Jared Leto’s Joker is well… unusual. Now I can use a myriad of words to describe his iteration of Gotham’s Clown Prince of Crime but I digress.
Robbie’s performance as the Joker’s Pumpkin Pie was so good that it led to the big WB to make a spinoff with the actress as its lead, creating Birds of Prey and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn.
Now, there are a lot of things to note here. One, too long. The title is too long. I know some people love films with long titles and see them as ‘clever’ sometimes, but it’s really not the case for this movie. This is not really a Birds of Prey movie, it’s a Harley Quinn movie, the reason why major cinemas like AMC, Cinemark, and Regal changed the title to Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey in their online listings for their ticket apps and to be honest, this title makes waaaay more sense than the long title that I don’t even want to copy-paste.
Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey would have made the perfect title for this film given that the story pretty much centers Harley and her exploits post-Joker and at the same time introduce the Birds of Prey in the process. Don’t get me wrong, the movie itself is fine. But the title doesn’t suit what the film and its story provide which has been one of the glaring reasons why it didn’t do well (or as expected anyway) on the box office.
Birds of Prey came out of the gate with a $33 million domestic weekend on the box office, having a negative 37% way below its $50 million trackings and is way below the $133 million box office opening of Suicide Squad. This has been the lowest opening number for a DC film within the past ten years and the title has something to do with it.
Warner Bros. has not officially changed the title, but it was but they suggested the title change to theaters to help distribute the movie more especially when it comes to search engine optimizations when it comes to ticket sales.
The movie took a hit from this, and sure, it may not be the best superhero film but it’s not a bad movie as well. It’s actually a fun film with Robbie still shining as Harley while the newly introduced Birds of Prey characters are introduced and are tagging along for the ride.