Death Note has hit Netflix and its star Lakeith Stanfield, thinking ahead to the rest of his career, decided he’d like to play The Joker. While the Harley and Joker spinoff has a set cast with Jared Leto returning to reprise his Suicide Squad role with Margot Robbie, the picture with Scorsese remains uncast. It’s promised to be the first of a brand new series of films that showcases DC’s wide comic slate, and while some fans are curious about how a Joker origin story that places a madman in the role of protagonist might look, there are sure to be a number of contenders for the role.
The Joker movie is being directed by Todd Phillips (The Hangover) and co-written by 8 Mile’s Scott Silver. They’ll be backed by none other than Martin Scorsese himself, though the famous Oscar winner’s role in the film is reportedly fluid. The origin story will feature a 1980s setting, taking it back to the era of Michael Keaton’s Batman and the first appearance of the iconic villain on movie screens. Jack Nicholson set the stage for the supervillain, who has had 3 live-action incarnations. The most recent, Leto, is firmly fixed with the DCEU which leaves this alternative banner and origin film wide open.
On Twitter, Stanfield asked Scorsese for the role of the Joker. For his part, the actor has the talent to perform the role. His work in Death Note to capture the quirks, mannerisms, and attitude of the popular anime character was very well done. In an adaptation that has faced criticism and fan scorn, he stands out as a highlight. Allowing him to take a crack at such an iconic character would surely provide an incredible performance.
Scorsese I'd like to play the Joker— Lakeith L Stanfield (@lakeithlakeith) August 26, 2017
The notion of altering the Joker’s character might come as a shock to many. Comic book fans can be set in their ways and not open to trying new things or allowing new actors to have a shot at iconic roles. Plus there’s previous film precedent for the Joker in multiple films and comic books as a white male. Casting Stanfield would be breaking real barriers that might make people uncomfortable.
Which makes it the perfect move to give Scorsese’s Joker origin film a much needed shot in the arm. Stanfield has proven that he has a lot of talent as a character actor. The Joker’s origin story has been re-written and re-told so many times that he himself has said in comic books, “If I’m going to have a past I prefer it to be multiple choice!” This would be a great way to give a very talented actor more chances to shine and give a new look to a character who always changes to put a smile on our faces.
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