Image from IndiewireBy Darian Scalamoni
Within Hollywood, there’s no such thing as a surprising development but this is the most puzzling that I’ve seen in years. According to multiple sources, Todd Phillips (The Hangover, War Dogs) will direct an origin movie based on the legendary DC Comics villain, The Joker. Even more shocking is that, Martin Scorsese will produce the film which is being sold as a movie in the same vein as his earlier efforts, Taxi Driver, Raging Bull and The King of Comedy.
This is BIG news and honestly the most intriguing project I’ve heard in a very, very long time. It is also known that Jared Leto, who portrayed the Clown Prince of Gotham in Suicide Squad will not reprise his role in this movie, yet it’s expected to take place in the early-80s in Gotham City. For super fans of the current DC Extended Universe which features Batman v. Superman, Suicide Squad and Wonder Woman, this origin spinoff will have not have any connection to these aforementioned movies. Instead, it will jumpstart DC’s other division of movies that will be filmmaker driven, making singular stories based on characters from the comics. Similar to what Fox did this year with Logan.
On one side, it could lead to some pretty great movies but for hardcore comic book movie fans, it could be incredibly confusing. Jared Leto’s Joker still exists but it has nothing to do with this movie that will also feature The Joker. It could dilute the product dramatically and with the current state of DC Films with the loss of directors, stars and production reshoots, it could backfire rather quickly. Having said that, a gritty, dark crime movie based on one of my favorite characters in history backed by Scorsese and Phillips is interesting enough to get me in a seat at the theater.