With the announcement that Jared Leto is returning to the DC Universe as his Trap-DJ’s-wet-dream incarnation of The Joker in a Suicide Squad spin-off, many fans reacted in dismay that this seemingly clashed with plans for an origin story film, with Joaquin Phoenix diving into the role of Batman’s iconic arch-nemesis.
Well, not to worry! Deadline has reported that Todd Phillips’ standalone project is still on, as the film will be separate from the main DCEU, under what is described as “a different DC origins cinematic banner.” Confused? Welcome to the fandom!
Joaquin Phoenix joins a growing list of Hollywood’s elite that have stepped into the purple suit of arguably comic book history’s most recognizable, if not polarizing, supervillain. Likely the most notable performance is that of Heath Ledger in The Dark Knight, Christopher Nolan’s 2008 sequel to Batman Begins. Ledger’s intense and twisted portrayal of the criminal mastermind overshadowed Christian Bale’s performance as The Caped Crusader, and won him several posthumous honors.
With Ledger’s success in elevating The Dark Knight’s biggest foe into a level of popularity in comic book fandom unreachable by even most superheroes, does it seem like Warner Bros. may be trying to capitalize on the celebrity of The Clown Prince of Crime? Only time will tell if this double dose of Joker Venom will pay off, or blow up in their face.
Either way, it’s hard to tell whether finally discovering The Joker’s origin will be as satisfying as it sounds on paper, or if it will leave us howling mad.
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