'Birds of Prey' Tracking for $50M-Plus Bow in North America
Birds of Prey — the first Hollywood superhero pic of 2020 — is tracking for a domestic debut of $50 million-plus at the North American box office.
Warner Bros. has three weeks left to make its biggest marketing push yet for the female-led, R-rated pic, which is set to debut Feb. 7 and stars Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn.
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Directed by Cathy Yan and based on the DC Comics team of the same name, the movie follows Quinn as she teams with Black Canary, Huntress and Renee Montoya to save Cassandra Cain from Gotham City crime lord Black Mask.
Robbie — who personally pitched the idea for the pic and serves as a producer — stars alongside Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Jurnee Smollett-Bell, Rosie Perez, Chris Messina, Ella Jay Basco, Ali Wong and Ewan McGregor.
In February 2016, Deadpool made history when it debuted to $132.4 million, proving that the winter month is a good launching pad for superhero titles. That was followed by an even bigger $202 million bow for Black Panther in 2018.
Birds of Prey is counting on strong word of mouth to build its grosses, versus a mega-debut. The film, like Shazam!, cost far less to produce than most superhero fare; its production budget was $81 million, including roughly $6 million for reshoots. The most recent trailer debuted Jan. 9.
"The final trailer for Cathy Yan’s Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) has arrived in all of its zany, energetic abundance of costume changes, ultraviolence, and yes, drug use. The film is shaping up to be an R-rated carnival, more in line with Deadpool than the Joker in terms of tone," Richard Newby for The Hollywood Reporter wrote of the trailer. "The first superhero film release of the new decade, in a year dominated by comic book films directed by women, Birds of Prey looks to break ceilings, smash in a few windows along the way, and of course cause a controversy or two."
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