The cast of Birds of Prey (And The Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) continues to round out, as word has just broken that Chris Messina has joined the production as Batman villain Victor Zsasz. He joins Margot Robbie, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Ewan McGregor, and Jurnee Smolett-Bell in the upcoming DC flick centered on a group of femme fatales facing off against Black Mask.
Messina is best known for his work on the small screen, where he’s had major roles in series like The Newsroom, The Mindy Project, and Damages. He does have a few, significant film credits including Julie & Julia, Argo, and Sharp Objects.
As for his character, Victor Zsasz, this is a bit of a surprise. While I’ve been made privy of certain key plot details, Zsasz’s name wasn’t included in the broader bullet points I was given, which leads me to believe this isn’t a huge role in the Cathy Yan-directed film.
For those unfamiliar with Victor Zsasz, Deadline offers this description of the Batman rogue:
“He was the head of his own international company, a rich guy who is still rich from his family’s fortune. At 25, his parents die in a boating accident and plummets into a deep depression losing himself in gambling, and ultimately everything to the Penguin. He tries to commit suicide, but after killing a homeless man, he becomes addicted to killing and is known for slitting his victims’ throats and leaving them in lifelike poses, while adding a tally mark to himself each time.”
If you don’t mind some potential *spoilerish* speculation on my part, my guess is…
…he’s enlisted by Ewan McGregor’s Roman Sionis, aka Black Mask, to help hunt down the Birds of Prey after they’ve relieved him of Cass Cain (and a precious diamond, depending on who you ask). In my original report on the film’s plot, there’s an allusion to the fact that Sionis “sends his men” after the Birds for the climactic Third Act, so I imagine they’re going to play up Zsasz as one of his go-to killers.
What do you think of this casting? And of Victor Zsasz’s inclusion in Birds of Prey (And The Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn)?