As fans and industry members descend on San Diego for the annual Comic Convention, WB took it upon themselves to unleash a bombshell BEFORE they take Hall H by storm on Saturday. This bombshell comes in the form of Todd Phillips‘ standalone Joker film, starring Joaquin Phoenix. According to WB’s announcement, the film is titled simply “Joker” and they’ve earmarked September to begin shooting in New York City, with a $55 million budget. That’s all to meet their brand-spanking new release date, October 4, 2019!
It hasn’t been that long since Joaquin Phoenix signed on to play the lead in Todd Phillips’ Joker film and today’s news confirms that Warner Bros. has fast-tracked the project.
And it makes complete sense why. WB already has a script in place from Phillips and his co-writer Scott Silver, a director in the aforementioned Phillips, and a superstar lead. That’s more than most previously announced DCEU films can say.
As an added bonus, Joker’s budget ($55 million) is a paltry sum when you consider what most superhero films cost, making it easier to greenlight and get things moving. Furthermore, it’s not a massive loss to WB if it doesn’t pan out the way they’re hoping. Although, considering Phoenix’s track record of being picky about his roles, there is optimism for this darker toned project.
Speaking of, there aren’t much plot details regarding Joker, but the studio has described it as an “exploration of a man disregarded by society [that] is not only a gritty character study, but also a broader cautionary tale.”. It’s said that Phillips and Silver took a lot of inspiration from Alan Moore‘s “The Killing Joke” and that description seems to fall in line with that story. If you’re unfamiliar with The Killing Joke, it’s the closest thing to a “backstory” we’ve ever seen in the comics, as a down-on-his-luck comedian gets involved with a bad crowd, gets in an altercation with Batman, only to fall into a vat of chemicals, turning him into the Clown Prince of Crime. The title, Joker, could be used as a double-meaning, in reference to the comedian portion. Telling that story also wouldn’t be too expensive, meaning a low budget of, say, $55 million could cover it.
With a production start date of September, expect more news for Joker to release as we get closer to cameras rolling.
Joker will hit theaters October 4, 2019!
Stay tuned for more SDCC 2018 news as it unfolds on Cinelinx.com!