Jared Leto's Joker days may be over, as the once in-development solo The Joker film and The Joker & Harley Quinn are reportedly not happening. Leto was the fourth actor to play the Joker in live-action on the big screen and made his debut in 2016's Suicide Squad. His version of the character was much more of a gangster, but the movie barely featured him and left audiences divided.
However, Warner Bros. and DC Films appeared to be very interested in keeping his version of the Joker around, even as they brought Joaquin Phoenix in to play the Clown Prince of Crime in a completely standalone film. There was at one time talk of him returning for Suicide Squad 2, but then more prominent roles appeared to come his way as a solo The Joker movie was put into development. Screen Rant also broke the news that a team-up/versus film between he and Margot Robbie's Harley Quinn was happening and it eventually landed a writing and directing duo. His involvement with a Suicide Squad sequel became less likely when James Gunn joined the project, and now Leto's other two Joker projects appear to have been shelved, too.
Forbes' Mark Hughes reports that the solo Joker film and The Joker & Harley Quinn movie have both "fallen by the wayside" at Warner Bros. There is no word on if either project could resurface at a later point in time, but that would appear to be unlikely at this stage.
The possible cancelation of the solo film is not too surprising since it never gained much traction to begin with. The studios were never able to officially hire a writer or director for the project. The Joker & Harley Quinn film on the other hand had Glenn Ficarra and John Requa attached to write and direct. They revealed last fall that the script was done and they were just waiting on the studios to give them the green light to make it. If this report is correct, then that call never came.
Although the lack of Leto/Joker projects now in-development may come as a surprise to some, the writing appears to have been on the wall for a while. Leto was cast by Sony as the lead of fellow comic book movie Morbius, and based on the success this universe has had with Venom, he could soon be tied up in an expansive Spider-Man spinoff universe. His casting as Morbius reportedly would not prohibit him from playing the Joker in the future, and while that may be the case, it does appear that both sides have moved on. So unless something changes, we shouldn't expect The Joker or The Joker & Harley Quinn to ever arrive in their current formats.
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- Joker (2019) release date: Oct 04, 2019
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- Wonder Woman 1984 (2020) release date: Jun 05, 2020
- The Batman (2021) release date: Jun 25, 2021
- DC Super Pets (2022) release date: May 20, 2022
- The Suicide Squad (2021) release date: Aug 06, 2021