Enthralling, dark, and truly wicked — the iconic supervillain Joker is back. And fans could not get enough of Joaquin Phoenix’s performance in the film’s official trailer.
Warner Bros. launched the comic book film’s official trailer on August 28, 2019. Every critique’s eye is on Phoenix, who will be playing the notorious Batman villain. Directed by Todd Phillips, the 1981-set film will follow the story of Arthur Fleck, a clown whose dream is to become a famous stand-up comedian.
The film has drawn comparisons to Jack Nicholson’s Joker in Batman 1989 and Heath Ledger in The Dark Knight.
The 2019 Joker was inspired by Martin Scorsese’s 1982 film The King of Comedy, which starred Robert De Niro as Rupert Pupkin. A man who struggles to become a talk show host despite his misadventures.
De Niro will also play as a talk show host whom Arthur idolizes in the Joker.
In an interview with the LA Times, Todd Phillips shared that it took him a year to convince Warner Bros. to make the film.
“There were emails about: ‘You realize we sell Joker pajamas at Target.’ There were a zillion hurdles, and you just sort of had to navigate those one at a time…. At the time I would curse them in my head every day. But then I have to put it in perspective and go, ‘They’re pretty bold that they did this,” the director said.
In the same report, the LA Times disclosed that Phillips took a drawn-out, four-month process for Phoenix to step into the role.
Philipps also shared that Phoenix had to lose at least 52 pounds for the role. “There are certain areas of the character that frankly still aren’t clear to me, and I’m fine with that. There’s something enjoyable about not having to answer a lot of those questions. It requires a certain amount of participation from the audience that feels different,” said Phoenix.
Joker hits theaters worldwide on Oct. 4.