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‘Birds of Prey’ Star Ewan McGregor Says ‘Feminist’ Harley Quinn Film Takes a Hard Look at Misogyny

Welcome to the DC Extended Universe, Ewan McGregor, who raves about the script for the upcoming Harley Quinn-led superhero entry.

Ewan McGregor'Christopher Robin' film premiere, Arrivals, Los Angeles, USA - 30 Jul 2018

Ewan McGregor

John Salangsang/REX/Shutterstock

Birds of Prey” won’t hit theaters until February 7, 2020, but fan excitement is already building for director Cathy Yan’s Harley Quinn film that distributor Warner Bros. has dubbed “The Fantabulous Emancipation of One Miss Harley Quinn.”

Starring in the film as Roman Sionis, aka the ruthless crime lord Black Mask, Ewan McGregor is a new entrant to the DC Extended Universe. He recently raved about the film’s script to French publication Premiere, while doing press rounds to promote his “Shining” sequel “Doctor Sleep,” hitting theaters November 8.

As translated by Cinema Blend, McGregor said, “What interested me with ‘Birds of Prey’ is that it’s a feminist film. It is very finely written. There is in the script a real look on misogyny, and I think we need that. We need to be more aware of how we behave with the opposite sex. We need to be taught to change.”

McGregor went on to say, “Misogynists in movies are often extreme: They rape, they beat women… and it is legitimate to represent people like that, because they exist and they are obviously the worst. But in the ‘Birds of Prey’ dialogues, there is always a hint of everyday misogyny, of those things you say as a man you do not even realize.”

More directly, McGregor said that the film takes on “mansplaining… and it’s in the script in a very subtle way. I found that brilliant.”

The candy-colored film — which this month finally released a first trailer — looks to be a show-stopping display of female power. Not only is the film directed by a woman, Yan, it features Mary Elizabeth Winstead as Huntress, Rosie Perez as Renee Montoya, and Jurnee Smollett-Bell as Black Canary. Along with, of course, Margot Robbie in the role of Harley Quinn, which she originated in 2016’s “Suicide Squad.”

“Birds of Prey” picks up where “Suicide Squad” left off, with Harley having left the Joker’s clutches to team up with Black Canary, Huntress, and Renee Montoya to save Cassandra Cain (Ella Jay Basco) from Black Mask (McGregor). The film also includes Chris Messina as self-mutilating serial killer Mr. Zsasz, and Ali Wong in a yet-to-be-disclosed role.

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