Warner Bros. has a pair of standalone Joker films forthcoming, and the one starring Joaquin Phoenix will arrive in theaters first. Phoenix will lead the cast of “Joker,” out October 4, 2019. “The Hangover” trilogy’s Todd Phillips will direct the tentpole, which he co-wrote with “The Fighter” Oscar nominee Scott Silver. This feature is expected to be the debut entry in a new branch of DC Films — more details could come at Warner Bros.’ Saturday morning San Diego Comic-Con presentation.
Drected by Todd Phillips (“The Hangover”), producers are Emma Tillinger Koskoff and Richard Baratta; they were Martin Scorsese’s producers on “The Wolf of Wall Street” and the upcoming “The Irishman.” Baratta also served as the production manager on the three Spider-Man films released between 2002 and 2007.
The Joker’s last on-screen appearance came courtesy of Jared Leto in “Suicide Squad” (2016). Leto will reprise the role in a different film that he will produce at a later date: His feature does not yet have a writer or director attached. Next year’s “Suicide Squad 2” — currently sans an exact release date — will likely revisit Leto’s Joker as well.
Rumored for months, Phoenix’s Joker casting was only verified June 10. The three-time Academy Award contender — who has played everyone from Johnny Cash (Walk the Line”) to Jesus Christ (“Mary Magdalene”) — told Collider last week that the prospect of donning the cackling villain’s snarl and acid green tresses “scares the fucking shit out of me.” Heath Ledger won a posthumous Oscar for playing the character in 2009.