Once she’s done helping Will Smith fight a younger version of himself in “Gemini Man,” Mary Elizabeth Winstead will team up with Margot Robbie, Rosie Perez and Jurnee Smollett-Bell in Warner Bros. female-led anti-hero comic book flick “Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of the One Harley Quinn).”
Winstead will play Huntress, who in the DC comics was once a mafia princess whose family was killed in a mob hit. She eventually becomes a vigilante hell bent on taking the mob down.
“She’s kind of an odd character… She’s weird, and funny and awkward,” Winstead said during a conversation about her upcoming film “Gemini Man,” in theaters Oct. 11. “You sort of get to tell this story of this girl who grew up training to be an assassin and didn’t ever have friends, and doesn’t know how to fit in socially, and doesn’t really know anything other than how to kill.
“We got to sort of play around with that in ways that are in ways that were both sort of sometimes disturbing and sometimes really funny,” she continued. “To get to play with that kind of a character was a really great opportunity.”
The character of Huntress — Winstead is playing the version whose actual name is Helena Berinelli — was created in 1989 by writer Joey Cavalieri and artist Joe Staton. Bertinelli is the third DC Comics character to use the name Huntress, and operating out of Gotham City, she’s typically an uneasy ally of Batman. She even briefly operated as Batgirl.
Winstead is no stranger to big screen comic book adaptations, having played Ramona Flowers in Edgar Wright’s 2010 cult hit “Scott Pilgrim vs. the World.” She continues to add to her repertoire of ass-kicking female characters. In “Gemini Man” Winstead plays Danny, a hitwoman hired to track Will Smith’s character, and after “Birds of Prey” she plays another assassin in “Kate,” who has 24 hours to revenger her murder before she dies.
“Huntress is definitely another strong, interesting, really sort of quote–unquote ‘badass character’ that’s really fun to play,” Winstead said. When she spoke to TheWrap in September last year for her film “All About Nina,” Winstead said she was excited about working with so many women.
“Being with the other actresses and a female director and just the whole energy behind this is so unique,” she said, “so I’m really happy about that.”