Joaquin Phoenix in talks to star in Joker origin movie

Joaquin Phoenix

Joaquin Phoenix in Talks to Play the Joker in Todd Phillips's Standalone DC Movie

After meeting with director Todd Phillips, he has reportedly decided he wants the part.

Warner Bros. has announced that Todd Phillips is on board to co-write and direct a standalone movie about the villain - and the 43-year-old actor is the first choice to play the Clown Prince of Crime, Variety reports.

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Variety reports that while studio negotiations haven't yet begun, Phillips has been clear about his desire to have Phoenix play The Joker, and Phoenix has agreed to the role in principle.

In the wake of a troubling roll-out for their extended universe, including the poorly received "Justice League" and "Suicide Squad", and the massive success of "Wonder Woman", Vulture reported past year that DC and Warner Bros. were rethinking their approach to the films. While "Suicide Squad" star Jared Leto isn't reprising the role in this particular project, another Academy Award victor is poised to take over. And one that looks poised to star Joaquin Phoenix, one of the most enigmatic but fascinating character actors working today. Heath Ledger set a perhaps unsurpassable bar for Joker performances in Christopher Nolan's trilogy, yet Phoenix is bound to have a compelling take on the role.

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What's still most baffling about this project is the involvement of Phillips, who crafts collections of moving images that resemble movies, but are really just trash piles that you watch while contemplating the finality of all existence. Instead, Warner Bros.is aiming to create a new imprint to tell stories of other characters in the DC canon, separate from any of their existing cinematic universes.

He passed on playing Lex Luthor in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (which went to Jesse Eisenberg) and on starring in Disney-Marvel's Doctor Strange. Scorsese's frequent collaborations with DiCaprio led many to make the connection that the actor would be cast as the Joker. It's said that this movie will be listed under a new banner of projects for Warner Bros. and DC Comics.

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