Well, this is a potentially brilliant piece of casting if it does indeed come off. Yes, as the headline suggests, Joaquin Phoenix is being lined up to play the Joker.
As per Variety, the Her and Walk the Line star has reportedly already agreed to play the Clown Prince of Crime in the upcoming Joker movie from Martin Scorsese and Todd Phillips. Phillips – best known for The Hangover – is directing the film, with Scorsese serving as a producer for a film that’s already being pegged as an '80s-set crime thriller similar in tone to Scorsese’s famed Taxi Driver.
This latest report claims that both Phoenix and Phillips are keen on this coming to be, but that official negotiations have yet to actually commence with Warner Brothers. Previously, Leonardo Di Caprio DiCaprio was the early frontrunner for the gig, but Phoenix is seemingly now the name in the frame.
Interestingly, Joaquin Phoenix has turned down several comic book roles over the years, turning down the role of the Hulk in Avengers Assemble, saying ‘no’ to taking the titular role in Doctor Strange, and additionally declining the Lex Luthor role in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.
This currently-untitled Joker-driven effort will stand separately to the current canon of the DC Extended Universe and to the opinion-splitting Jester of Genocide played by Jared Leto. Todd Phillips is currently working on the script with 8 Mile’s Scott Silver.
As ever, expect more on all of this as we get it.