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Joker Director Shares BTS Photo of Joaquin Phoenix, Confirms Intended R Rating

Joker Trailer - Forced Grin

Todd Phillips shares a new behind-the-scenes look at Joker, while also confirming that the film will be rated R. Actors like Cesar Romero, Jack Nicholson, Heath Ledger, and Jared Leto have transformed into the Clown Prince of Crime for movies, but Joaquin Phoenix is set to play the Joker in the character's first solo origin story. Phillips will be directing the film, who is most known for directing movies like Old School, The Hangover, and War Dogs.

Ever since the film entered production, Phillips has been teasing fans with Joker images. Last September, the director shared the first look of Phoenix as Arthur Fleck, before revealing Phoenix's full Joker makeup the following week. Phillips has continully shared stills of Phoenix as the Joker, but there has also been an abundance of set photos and videos from Joker that gave fans an even better look at the character in action. Things have been a bit quiet since the poster and teaser trailer for Joker were released, but now fans have gotten another behind-the-scenes look at the film.

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Related: Heath Ledger Hated Comic Book Movies - Then He Met Christopher Nolan

Posting on Instagram, Phillips shared a new still of Phoenix's character. In the image Arthur is sitting in front of a mirror, applying white facepaint. Phillips captioned the post "Finishing touches.", but the comment section was more interesting than his actual caption. In the comment section, somebody asked Phillips what the MPAA rating of the film would be, to which Phillips responded, "It will be Rated R. I've been asked this a lot. Just assumed people knew. Sorry". Phillips original post can be seen below:

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Finishing touches.

A post shared by Todd Phillips (@toddphillips1) on

While the Joker has already appeared in Suicide Squad for the DC Extended Universe, Phillips' Joker movie will be more of a stand alone story. At one point, Warner Bros. seemed to be in competition with Marvel and their cinematic universe, but after poor reviews for several of their films like Justice League and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, they seem to be taking a different route. Instead of trying to make a giant shared universe like Marvel, Warner Bros. seems to be focusing more on passion projects like with Ava DuVernay and her New Gods movie.

For a while it had been thought that Warner Bros. was shooting for an R rating for Joker, but Phillips has now confirmed the rating. This will be a change of pace for DC films as the only R-rated superhero films they've had are the animated movies that often don't get a theatrical release. That being said, Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) will be rated R, so Joker could set a new precedent for DC films if it is successful. Regardless, with as twisted as the Joker can be, it will likely be reasurring to fans that Joker will for sure be rated R.

More: Joker Theory: Joaquin Phoenix Version Is Batman's Brother

Source: Todd Phillips

Key Release Dates
  • 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
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