Here's Our First, Sans-Makeup Look At Joaquin Phoenix As The Joker

Carla Harmon
September 17, 2018

Director Todd Phillips has shared the first look of Joaquin Phoenix as the Joker in the upcoming origin movie about Batman's nemesis. Phillips is known for helming The Hangover comedy trilogy. Though his character Arthur Fleck is not yet donning the Joker's trademark makeup in the footage, the clown element of his arc is already foreshadowed via both the merry-go-round in the background and the red-nosed amusing man who confronts him. The Joker has, of course, used many aliases over the years, but most have always involved a "J" somewhere (Jack Napier, Jack White etc.), so it's something of a departure for this incarnation to omit the letter entirely. While we know Deadpool 2's Zazie Beetz, Oscar award-winning actor Robert De Niro, and GLOW co-star Marc Maron are in the film-but we have no clue as to who they're playing from the vast Batman lore.

But all that was subject to change this afternoon after Warner Bros. released a portrait of Joaquin Phoenix in costume and make-up.

Check out the pic of Phoenix in pre-Joker mode. It will explore the life of a man destined to become Gotham City's Clown Prince of Crime.

Todd Phillips making a serious, grounded movie about the Joker is odd enough. With a $55 million budget, the current consensus is that the film will be more of a character study than a blockbuster action flick. For the time being, Jared Leto will continue to play Joker there. It is worth noting that this film will not be associated with the DC film universe.

The movie is slated for an October 4, 2019 release.

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