Not many thought it possible, but Warner Bros.' Joker is reportedly on track to achieve $1 billion at the worldwide box office. The Joaquin Phoenix-starring hit has been doing exceptionally well. Just last week, the film climbed over $900 million worldwide.
When Joker was announced, few (if any) predicated how massive the film would be upon release. Joker looked to be the opposite of a major breadwinner. It was a comic book film, but it wasn't marketed as a Batman film. As a standalone character study with an R rating, it wasn't set up to be an ultimate crowd-pleaser. Defying expectations, Joker broke the October opening record held by Venom. Next, the movie became the highest-grossing R-rated film worldwide. Joker is captivating a lot of people thanks in large part to the acclaimed performance of Phoenix as the title character. Now, despite not expecting to release in China, Joker could be on its way to hitting its biggest milestone yet.
Joker has achieved $934 million worldwide (via Variety), and is reportedly on track to hit the $1 billion mark. If Joker does make $1 billion, it will be the first R-rated film to do so, and the seventh movie overall from this year. Warner Bros.' president of domestic distribution, Jeff Goldstein, says the film's story had such great traction because of the "realness of the characters."
Working in Joker's favor, competing releases have not offered much in actual competition. Terminator: Dark Fate should have been the biggest competition, since it was also aiming at an older crowd. But, the latest Terminator outing is bombing at the box office. Maleficent: Mistress of Evil did take the top spot from Joker, but the Angelina Jolie-starring flick likely will not be a massive financial hit. Meanwhile, Joker will continue to climb, and has a good chance of achieving $1 billion.
If Avengers: Endgame was the most discussed film of the year, Joker is certainly the second. Although there is somewhat of a divide between critics and fans, many on both sides agree Phoenix is masterful as the title character. It remains to be seen if Phoenix will be nominated for any Academy Awards for his performance. Whether one enjoyed the film or not, there is no denying that there's a raw quality to it. Joker uses an iconic comic book character, and turns it into a character study on a mentally ill man pushed to the side by society. Joker will definitely not be forgotten anytime soon.
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