Todd Philips is prepared to show more of that sinister smile of Joaquin Phoenix’s Joker. Or is he?
In a recent article in The Hollywood Reporter, a section focusing on Philips’s lawyer indicated that writer-director had “struck a deal to co-write the next Joker [installment.]”
Todd Phillips Co-Writing Next Joker, But Is it HIS Joker?
But, this is where it gets confusing given that Warner Media has no intention of reestablishing a shared universe. “The next Joker installment” could mean an actual sequel to the surprise blockbuster, multi-award-winning 2019 film. However, it could also mean a standalone film in the anthology of DC films. Todd could be tasked with merely writing the next installment as opposed to helming it. Or is a question of “If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck…”?
The upcoming Flash film is set to establish the DC Multiverse made up of every previously seen TV and cinematic depictions of DC Comics’ pantheon of heroes and villains. That being said, it would stand to reason that there is room enough for more than one Clown Prince of Crime in Hollywood. Jared Leto’s Joker has recently gotten unexpected popularity, for example, following the release of Zack Snyder’s Justice League. Even Margot Robbie apparently will have more than one version of Harley Quinn in the can following the first Suicide Squad film, Birds of Prey, and the upcoming standalone feature, The Suicide Squad.
Joker, directed by Phillips and co-written with Scott Silver, certainly left the door open for the next chapter. The film saw failed comedian Arthur Fleck descend completely into madness and crime, embracing his new Joker persona by the end of the film. The ensuing riot caused by his new fan following also resulted in the Wayne murders, putting young Bruce – the maybe-or-maybe-not half-brother of Arthur – on the path to becoming Batman. Although there’d be a large age gap between them, it’s not unlike the 1989 Batman film by Tim Burton, where Jack Nicholson’s Joker killed Bruce’s parents when he was a young Jack Napier and yet Joker still pulled his weight with the adult Caped Crusader. Regardless, the conclusion of the film indicates Arthur has escaped from Arkham. Possibly the first spin of that revolving door?
There is enough head behind The Ace of Knaves to garner further cinematic appearances, and Phillips has proven he can pull the audience down the rabbit hole with him. But as to whether this is indeed a sequel in the works or another project Warner has in mind, time will tell.
Whatever the joke is, we are sure to get it.