- Warning: There are spoilers ahead for “Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn).”
- There’s a small moment in “Birds of Prey” where Harley Quinn gives Black Canary a hair tie in the middle of a big fight sequence.
- Women are applauding the moment for portraying a realistic view of women in a comic-book movie.
- Director Cathy Yan tells Insider the moment came from a conversation with screenwriter Christina Hodson where the latter thought it was “crazy” how “all these women have perfect blown-out hair in all these other action films.”
- Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
“Birds of Prey” is finally in theatres and if you’ve seen the female-led romp, there’s one moment in particular that has women cheering.
Late in the film when Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie) unites with Black Canary (Jurnee Smollett-Bell), Renee Montoya (Rosie Perez), and Huntress (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) to take down Black Mask, the women are fighting in a huge action sequence.
At one point, Black Canary gets frustrated as she finds her hair in her face. Harley notices and skates over to her before offering her a hair tie in a simple gesture.
Black Canary quickly grabs it, thanking her, and seamlessly continues fighting off bad guys as she’s throwing her hair up.
Here’s the scene in full:
It’s a moment that’s getting noticed a lot by fans, especially women, who can relate.
Let’s be real. No one is fighting crime with long, flowing hair that could constantly get in the way.
One of the best parts of the movie involved a hairtie. pic.twitter.com/piZQfsz8GH
— Gbenga Ajilore (@gbenga_ajilore) February 7, 2020
— kirstee ???????? (@kaymbee) February 7, 2020
It’s hard to pick a favorite moment in #BirdsOfPrey (so many candidates!) but one contender is when Harley hands Black Canary a hair tie in the middle of a fight, paying off at least two decades of me yelling “TIE YOUR HAIR BACK” at women in action movies.
— Lauren Thoman (@LaurenThoman) February 7, 2020
— Kara Hedash (@thekaraverse) February 7, 2020
When Harley gave Black Canary a hair tie, I have never related to something so hard#BirdsOfPrey
— ????Brandroid???? (@bran_flakey_) February 7, 2020
The scene made it clear to fans that this was a movie made by women, for women.
— Nikki (@randomlilnikki) February 5, 2020
I didn't know going into #BirdsOfPrey that it was directed by a woman, but a key line about a hair tie made me turn to my husband and say "I bet a woman made this". I was correct.
— Raina – I support Mi'kmaq- Mermaid (@HFXMermaid) February 7, 2020
You can tell a movie was directed and written by a women when in the middle of an action scene someone hands a hair band to their teammate pic.twitter.com/SUe5PsCCuf
— Keiley Kaiser (@keileykaiser) January 29, 2020
They’re right. Not only is Margot Robbie a producer on the film, but it was directed by Cathy Yan, written by Christina Hodson (“Bumblebee”), and Erin Benach was the costume designer.
It’s one of, at least, two scenes where a more practical, realistic approach is taken with the female characters on screen.
Another instance takes place after that fight sequence. Harley is seen busting one of her rollerskates. Instead of getting other shoes, she removes the skates and continues after Black Mask in nothing but socks.
How the hair tie scene came together
“That came from a conversation that Christina [Hodson] and I had,” “Birds of Prey” director Cathy Yan told my Insider colleague Jason Guerrasio. “I think she brought up how crazy it is that all these women have perfect blown-out hair in all these other action films, and I was like, ‘You’re right.'”
“I put my hair up for anything,” Yan continued of how it’s a common tendency for anyone with long hair to tie it back when doing most tasks. “I put my hair up to wash my face, I’m certainly going to do it to fight some bad guys.”
In an interview with Digital Spy, Smollet-Bell added that it was just a natural instinct. When the women go to the gym, they’re definitely tying their hair back. The scene simply brought a real-life moment to screen.
- Read more:
- The 12 biggest questions we have after watching ‘Birds of Prey’
- 16 details and references you may have missed in ‘Birds of Prey’
- ‘Birds of Prey’ handles the absence of Jared Leto’s Joker in the perfect way
- ‘Birds of Prey’ is a rousing girl power movie with an excellent Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn
- Harley Quinn’s yellow jumpsuit in ‘Birds of Prey’ took the longest to get right and they tested it in 4 colours