Warner Bros. is moving forward with a Joker origin film with Joaquin Phoenix signed on to play Batman’s greatest villain. Todd Phillips (The Hangover, War Dogs) will be directing the supervillain origin story for WB. Philips co-wrote the screenplay with Scott Silver (The Fighter). WB describes the film as an “exploration of a man disregarded by society [that] is not only a gritty character study but also a broader cautionary tale.”
This is one of many projects Warner Bros. has lined up, and one of three DC projects that focus primarily on the Joker. A few weeks ago it was announced the Jared Leto, the current Joker, will be starring in his own feature.
The Phoenix starring stand-alone Joker film has not gotten a release date, but is set to go into production this fall. The projected budget will be around $55 million, which suggests that this will be a less fantastical and epic story like previous DC films. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the film is meant to be darker and experimental in tone and content.
Earlier reporting suggested the film will follow the origin story that is set up in the Killing Joke — Alan Moore’s famous graphic novel that gave the Joker his origin tale, but many iterations of the Joker have proved that he is a man of many mysteries; his origin being one of them.
With SDCC a few weeks away, Warner Bros. may clarify their plans for the Joker and their upcoming DC movie slate.
To see a complete list of what has been announced thus far, click here.