Industry Insiders Explain the Reason Behind Birds of Prey’s Name Change

Earlier this week, word got around that Warner Bros. was implementing a new promotional strategy to help boost Birds of Prey’s floundering box office performance. Visits to major theater chain websites like Regal and AMC revealed that the movie was being re-christened as Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey, in hopes that putting Margot Robbie’s character’s name at the beginning of the title would bring in new viewers. Now, via The Verge, industry insiders are sharing their thoughts on why Birds of Prey just isn’t resonating.

Put simply, as a title, Birds of Prey isn’t “SEO friendly.” The Verge alleges that putting Harley’s name front and center gives audiences a better idea of what they can expect. Admittedly, this sounds disingenuous, since Harley Quinn’s face is plastered all over the film’s promotional materials. Regardless, the studio is confident in its success. According to a WB representative, the change also makes it easier for people to find the film on ticketing websites.

RELATED: Birds of Prey Is Now Called Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey

Another industry insider went so far as to say that the film’s marketing campaign was a “disaster.” Apparently, it doesn’t matter how many times we saw Robbie’s made-up face or heard her say “I’m Harley freakin’ Quinn.” Because the trailers or TV spots didn’t do a good job of explaining the movie’s plot, many viewers stayed home. This latest maneuver aims to make up for that mistake.

Some have compared the situation to that of Fox’s Dark Phoenix, which bombed at the box office last summer. That movie definitely fared worse with critics than Birds of Prey. However, a few critics blamed the absence of “X-Men” in the title for the financial blowback. Regardless, Fox waited until the film’s Blu-ray release to add X-Men to Dark Phoenix‘s title.

Do you think the Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey title will help the film capture some newfound box office glory? Let us know in the comment section below!

Recommended Reading: Harley Quinn The Rebirth: Deluxe Collection Vol. 1

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