Todd Phillips

SPOILER/RUMOR ALERT: This article contains information regarding Todd Phillips’ upcoming film ‘Joker’ so you may wish to proceed with caution.

For most of his published career, The Joker hasn’t had a real name.  The closest he came was Tim Burton’s 1989 ‘Batman’ in which Jack Nicholson’s Clown Prince of Crime was named Jack Napier before his transformation.  More recently, on ‘Gotham’ it’s been constantly teased that  Jerome Valeska would eventually become The Joker.  Then later, his twin Jeremiah entered the picture.  But so far, neither has officially turned that corner.

Now it seems that Todd Phillips’ movie ‘Joker’ will add another possible alias– Arthur Fleck.  After all, considering that this film is a prequel, they pretty much have to give him a name.  And Jack Napier was never carved in stone or used that frequently and the Valeska name was only recently coined.  So it makes sense that Phillips and his co-writer Scott Silver came up with their own moniker and “Arthur Fleck” does sound pretty Batman-ish.

Phillips’ movie is described as an “exploration of a man disregarded by society [that] is not only a gritty character study but also a broader cautionary tale.”  Joaquin Phoenix will portray Arthur Fleck/The Joker.  At the beginning of the film, he will return to his hometown, presumably Gotham City, to care for his ailing, possibly dying mother.  It was recently rumored that Frances Conroy was being courted to play Arthur’s mother.  The name given for her is Penny although that could be a fake casting name or it could change.  According to her casting description, she is described as “very attractive in her youth“, “obsessed with her former employer” and unable to believe “this is what her life has come to.”

It is while living with Penny, that Arthur meets single mother Sophie Dumond (Zazie Beetz appears to be in negotiations) and embarks on his harrowing journey that will eventually lead to his fateful transformation.

Robert De Niro is said to be finalizing a deal to appear as talk show host Murray Franklin.  Also appearing in the film is Bruce’s father Thomas Wayne, a “cheesy, tanned” rich guy.  Because the film is from the Joker’s perspective, Wayne is not depicted in a positive light.

The clues provided here hint that it’s possible that Thomas Wayne is Arthur’s father!  That would make The Joker and Batman half-brothers!  That’s just a possibility but there is word that in one scene, Thomas Wayne appears as a guest on Murray Franklin’s talk show.  It’s also possible that Franklin could be The Joker’s father and the fact that they are seeking someone as high-profile as De Niro for that role would imply that he is a pretty important figure.

These are just rumors or speculations, so don’t take any of it as fact.

The ‘Joker’ movie is slated to begin filming in September in New York City.  No release date has been announced.

Source: That Hashtag Show