Warner Bros. and DC Films' The Batman star Robert Pattinson drops a Joaquin Phoenix Joker spoiler in an interview, then retracts it - so what did he accidentally reveal? In recent years, Warner Bros' Worlds of DC franchise has evolved from a simple cinematic universe (though that still exists in the form of the DC Extended Universe) to include films set in separate universes. The first of these is Todd Phillips' Joker, which doesn't continue the continuity from David Ayer's Suicide Squad - in which Jared Leto played the Joker - and instead follows a different version of the character played by Phoenix.
However, Warner Bros. is still planning to release films in the DCEU, including Birds of Prey, Wonder Woman 1984 and Aquaman 2. Matt Reeves' upcoming The Batman is also expected to be set in the DCEU, but will follow a younger version of Bruce Wayne than the one played by Ben Affleck. Pattinson was cast for The Batman, confirming the movie would follow a younger take on the character. However, there have been reports that The Batman wouldn't be set in the DCEU, though Reeves has said in the past that it would. Those rumors circulated prior to Pattinson's casting, and with a new actor on board, it remains to be seen how connected (or disconnected) the movie is from the DCEU. A new comment from the actor himself may offer some insight.
In an extensive interview with Variety, Pattinson spoke about his Batman casting, donning the Batsuit for the first time and meeting with Marvel Studios for Guardians of the Galaxy years ago. Toward the end of Variety's published interview, writer Ramin Setoodeh makes note of a particular exchange between the two, part of which is retracted due to it being a spoiler. Read Setoodeh's description of the exchange and Pattinson's on the record comments below.
At one point in our conversation, he offers a mundane comment about Joaquin Phoenix, who stars in Joker (a movie he hasn’t seen yet), before asking to retract it. "Oh s—," he says, adding that he’s not accustomed to thinking about spoilers. "I definitely should not say that. I’m so used to pretty art-house movies, where you can watch the movie three times and still not know what it’s about."
It's unclear what exactly Pattinson said that he retracted, but based on Setoodeh's description and the actor's following comments we can make some inferences. Setoodeh confirms whatever Pattinson said is a spoiler, though it's not clear whether it spoils Joker, The Batman or both movies. Since Pattinson hasn't seen Joker and Setoodeh specifically says the actor's comment was about Phoenix, we can assume the spoiler isn't about the Joker movie itself. So if it's not about Joker, but it is about Phoenix, then it sounds as if Pattinson accidentally confirmed he'll get to act alongside the man who plays the Joker in an upcoming movie. Although it may that Pattinson was referring to a non-DC movie that hasn't been announced yet, the more logical conclusion seems to be the two will unite in an upcoming DC film.
If that's the case, it'll have much larger implications on the Worlds of DC franchise and the universe of the DCEU. Pattinson's Batman and Phoenix's Joker appearing in a movie together either confirms The Batman exists outside the DCEU, or that Joker will somehow be brought into the DCEU. It's possible that Warner Bros. is waiting to see how successful Joker is, since it's their first R-rated comic book superhero movie. If it's a critical and box office success, Joker could launch a new R-rated franchise that exists separate to the DCEU - one that includes The Batman. But if Joker fails, then the studio and Reeves could rework The Batman.
That said, without knowing exactly what Pattinson said, it's impossible to know what implications his spoiler has on the DCEU and The Batman. For now, fans will have to wait and see what Phoenix's villain origin film has in store, how it sets up a possible Joker sequel or return and whether The Batman will be connected.
- 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