Early box office projections for Joker indicate it will have a higher opening weekend than Aquaman. When Joker was first announced, many viewers raised skeptical eyebrows, but over the past several months, the tune surrounding director Todd Phillips' origin movie has changed. Thanks in large part to a teaser trailer that evoked Martin Scorsese classics such as Taxi Driver and The King of Comedy, Joker is now one of the most anticipated titles of the fall season and looks to be a showcase for star Joaquin Phoenix.
Warner Bros. is clearly confident in what they have, as evidenced by their decision to screen Joker at some of the various fall film festivals this year. Some believe Joker will have what it takes to be a legitimate Oscar contender, and it also looks like it's going to be a substantial commercial draw when it open to the general public later this year.
According to Box Office Pro, long range forecasting for Joker pegs the film for an opening weekend of approximately $77 million. This would be an impressive debut for the film, and a little higher than the $67.8 million Aquaman earned during its first three days last December.
If these estimates hold true, Joker will come very close to matching Venom's all-time October record of $80.2 million and narrowly edge out Halloween's $76.2 million. Still, it's worth pointing out that box office projections are not an exact science and there's plenty of time for these numbers to fluctuate. Joker projections could change (in one direction or another) depending on how it's received at the festivals. Should word-of-mouth be positive and Joker lives up to its on-paper potential, then perhaps it'll set a new October mark in its debut. If the film struggles to make an impression with viewers, then there's a chance it'll underperform. Joker is far from a typical comic book movie, as it's clearly positioned as an R-rated character drama targeted at adults. That's why WB made it a fall release instead of a summer tentpole.
WB doesn't have as much riding on Joker as they did on something like Justice League, but the studio would obviously like the film to do well at the box office. Last year, it was reported that Joker would be launching a new label of DC adaptations titled DC Dark or DC Black, a line of films separate from the DCEU that would be one-off in nature. The idea behind it would be to allow filmmakers an opportunity to come in and lend their unique voice and style to one of DC's characters without having to worry about larger shared universe connections. In order for that initiative to truly take off, Joker needs to be a hit out of the gates and it looks like that's what's going to happen.
Source: Box Office Pro
- Joker (2019) release date: Oct 04, 2019
- Birds of Prey (And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) (2020) release date: Feb 07, 2020
- Wonder Woman 1984 (2020) release date: Jun 05, 2020
- The Batman (2021) release date: Jun 25, 2021
- The Suicide Squad (2021) release date: Aug 06, 2021
- DC Super Pets (2022) release date: May 20, 2022
- Aquaman 2 (2022) release date: Dec 16, 2022