It feels like just yesterday that we got a new, doughy eyed Joker in the form of Jared Leto. However, it’s been over two years. Still not a long time, but in this world of constant superhero reboots, it’s time for another one. Joaquin Phoenix will take over as the Clown Prince of Crime in a new origin story for the character. The director of the upcoming film, Todd Philips, recently revealed a first-look of The Joker before he became The Joker. Back then he was just “Arthur” and was decidedly less intimidating in both appearance and name.
However, this isn’t a total reboot for The Joker. According to Variety, Jared Leto will still play the role in the DC Universe. Meanwhile this film will exist as a standalone. Warner Bros. also mentioned that there will also be a standalone Joker film with Jared Leto. Again, two separate Jokers, but not in the same universe. Batman doesn’t need two Jokers to contend with, although that would be cool.
It may be a bit perplexing that The Joker will get an origin story, since the character has often thrived on mystery. In The Dark Knight, Heath Ledger’s Joker showing up with absolutely zero backstory aided an already chilling portrayal. The movie even made a point to show that the police couldn’t find anything on the guy. However, the Joker did receive a small backstory in Tim Burton’s Batman. Played by Jack Nicholson, the Joker falls into a vat of chemicals which somehow turn him into a villain. And that’s all we needed at the time, but it looks like we’re about to get more detail.
The upcoming as-of-now unnamed film will also feature Zazie Beetz, Bill Camp, Frances Conroy and Marc Maron. Just the other day Warner Bros. confirmed that Robert De Niro will join the cast as well.
Joaquin Phoenix will give us his version of the famous face-painted foe on October 4th, 2019.