Warner Bros.'Joker origin movie will introduce him as a failed comedian in the 1980s. While the studio is still working on expanding their DC Comics-based shared universe, they're not shying away from making other, non-connected DC films. For instance, they're continuing to stay in the animated space with Teen Titans Go! To The Movies, to further appeal to kids. They're also looking to branch out further by telling the Clown Prince of Crime's origin story.
The upcoming film is being directed by The Hangover's Todd Phillips from a script by 8 Mile scribe Scott Silver, with acclaimed filmmaker Martin Scorsese on board to produce. It was just recently that reports of Joaquin Phoenix circling the role surfaced, but nothing has officially come out of those talks just yet. In fact, it was only a few days ago that Phoenix seemed to indicate that he had no idea the Joker origin movie even existed. Despite that, the first real details on Joker's origin movie has been revealed, though it's not much of a surprise.
The Wrap reports Todd Phillips and Scott Silver's take on the iconic Batman villain sees him as a failed comedian in an '80s Gotham. The story update shouldn't be much of a surprise to comic book fans of the character who've read one of Joker's many origin stories in The Killing Joke. But what's interesting is that the movie will reportedly also take inspiration from Scorsese's King of Comedy film starring Robert De Niro, whose character is also a failed comedian.
As mentioned, outside of Scorsese's own previous work, the failed comedian origin is one that was previously used in Alan Moore's famous Batman: The Killing Joke graphic novel. In that version of Joker's beginnings, he leaves behind a steady job as an engineer to pursue his dream of becoming a comedian. It isn't until he fails miserably that everything in his life falls apart. Eventually, he becomes wrapped up in a plot to rob his former employer but flees the scene after his wife dies and Batman shows up to thwart the robbery. That's when the Joker falls into a chemical vat, thus leaving his skin bleached, with bright red lips and green hair. That's when he becomes the Joker.
Since that's just one of many comic origins for the character, there's no telling what changes Phillips and Silver could make for the film. They could just loosely adapt the comic, but such inspiration also raises questions over what the film's focus and tone would be. Since Phillips comes from a comedy background, could this approach point to a film that actually has a great deal of humor? Previous reports said that the Joker origin movie would be "super dark and real." Additionally, its still unclear how much of an "origin" movie this will be. They could probably stretch this out over an entire film - ending it with the turn - or this could just be the first-half that leads to the Joker actually climbing the criminal ranks in Gotham. As the Joker origin movie moves closer to production this May, hopefully more details will come out.
Source: The Wrap