Joaquin Phoenix Admits He Wanted A Joker Character Study Movie Years Before He was Cast

Author Thumbnail BY Tiny Diapana - July 12, 2018

Earlier this week, Warner Brothers officially announced that the studio had cast Academy Award-winning actor as Batman’s biggest enemy in Todd Phillip’s The Joker.

Rumors about Phoenix’s involvement in the studio’s non-DCEU Joker origin movie started circulating earlier this year, however, the Her actor did everything he could to deflate the speculation by regularly turning down the rumors during interviews with various publications.

However, now that the cat’s out of the bag, Phoenix admits in an interview with Collider that he actually had been thinking about playing the Joker years before he had been cast for the role. According to the actor, three or four years ago he used to wonder why studios wouldn’t make low budget character study movies about comic book villains, and one of those he thought of was the Joker.

“And I thought, ‘You can’t do the Joker, because, you know, it’s just you can’t do that character, it’s just been done.’ So I was trying to think of other characters, and he said ‘I’ll set up a general meeting with Warner Bros.’ And I said ‘I’m not gonna go, I can’t go to a general meeting.’ So I completely forgot about it, and so then I heard about this idea, I was like, ‘Oh that’s so exciting, that’s the kind of experience I wanted to have, with a movie based on a comic character.’ I felt like you could get something on screen.”

Phoenix’s interest in the comic book genre seems quite a surprise considering the actor’s track record. The actor is usually known for playing complex roles in notable award-winning films like Walk the Line, Gladiator, The Master, Her and You Were Never Really Here. Of course, that doesn’t necessarily mean that a comic book movie can’t showcase complex characters. Take, for example, The Dark Knight. Heath Ledger's performance as the Joker was phenomenal in the film.

Besides, Warner Brothers has made it pretty clear that The Joker would be a character study of Batman’s nemesis. We can’t wait and see Phoenix’s interpretation of the role on the big screen.

The Joker doesn’t have a release date just yet, but we’ll let everyone know as soon as we get word.

Read: Joaquin Phoenix Comments on Landing the Joker Role

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Tiny Diapana is a literary dilettante and warrior of the written word. She has a penchant for poetry, with some of her compositions seeing publication in anthologies. Tiny is drawn to magic realism (eg. Salman Rushdie, Etgar Kerret) and books that are stylistic and Kafkaesque. Her free time is often spent on boardgames, books, manga, comics, pop culture series, movies and practicing bass.
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