Even though Warner Brothers is developing a solo movie for Jared Leto’s ‘Joker’, things are still progressing with the unattached ‘Joker’ origin movie that was announced last year.  This film won’t include Leto, but will instead star Joaquin Phoenix and will be directed by Todd Phillips (‘War Dogs’) with Martin Scorsese producing.

With president Diane Nelson departing Warner Brothers and Geoff Johns leaving his executive position in order to write and produce, Walter Hamada, president of DC movies for WB, will have a tighter grip on the studio’s film output.

Todd Phillips
Kathy Hutchins /

Phillips’ ‘Joker’ movie is expected to begin filming this fall, with a tiny budget of $55 million, and will be released under a new boutique banner, which is rumored to be called ‘DC Dark’ or ‘DC Black’ to differentiate it and subsequent releases from the mainstream DC superhero film universe.  This picture is said to be set in the 1980s and will depict the man that will become the Clown Prince of Crime as a failed comedian and his rise to power in Gotham City’s seedy underworld.  With such a small budget, this gritty noir film may actually turn a profit, something that most DC movies have failed to do, with the exception of ‘Wonder Woman‘.  This take on The Joker is said to be the most grounded cinematic version yet, even more so than Heath Ledger‘s depiction in ‘The Dark Knight’ for which he won a posthumous Academy Award.

Warner Bros is hoping to use this film as a beacon to other powerful creatives in the industry who may want to create a film using the DC Comics properties, but don’t want to be locked in to direct multiple films or to shoehorn their visions into the larger shared universe.

Because the Leto movie was just announced a week ago, there is no news on that yet, so there is no telling who will write or direct it.

What do you think?  Is there enough interest to support two separate ‘Joker’ movies?

Source: The Hollywood Reporter