Though much remains mysterious about the nature of the project at this point, it seems Warner Bros. still intends to make Joker 2. Director Todd Phillips and star Joaquin Phoenix have been pretty quiet on that front over the last year or so following the first movie’s big night at the Oscars in 2020, with Phoenix taking home Best Actor for his work as the iconic comic book villain. But now we have word that the studio is still pursuing a follow-up to the R-rated DC adaptation.
Recently, a report detailed Warner Bros.’ upcoming Superman reboot, which will feature a Black version of the superhero. J.J. Abrams is producing the movie with Ta-Nehisi Coates penning the screenplay. The piece went on to detail other elements of what the studio has planned with DC Films moving forward, including the expanding DC multiverse, which will kick off in The Flash movie. Though it was noted that projects such as The Batman and Joker will still exist as standalones and will not be part of the multiverse. The report then mentioned “Joker and its planned sequel.”
Unfortunately, no further details were provided. It was originally reported in November 2019, as Joker was in the middle of its unexpectedly massive run at the box office, that a sequel was in development. Though the brakes were pumped shortly thereafter. While talks had taken place, no contracts had been signed. There were also rumors floating around that Warner Bros. was hoping to sway Joaquin Phoenix to return for not one but two sequels, and was looking to pay him a mountain of cash to do so. Again, nothing official has been revealed from Todd Phillips or Phoenix.
Aside from dealing with the logistics, making Joker 2 is a no-brainer from the business side of things. Joker, controversial and divisive though it may have been, earned a staggering $1.07 billion at the global box office. It shattered expectations and became the highest-grossing R-rated movie in history. It also earned several Oscar nominations, including one for Best Picture. Aside from Joaquin Phoenix winning Best Actor, the movie also won in the Best Original Score category. All of this to say, in the current Hollywood landscape, a sequel is all but guaranteed. Or, at the very least, the studio will do what they can to persuade Todd Phillips and Joaquin Phoenix to return.
If Todd Phillips, who had previously been known best for directing comedies such as The Hangover and Old School, doesn’t want to return, a new director could conceivably be put in place. But without Joaquin Phoenix signing on the dotted line, it’s hard to imagine there being any chance of a follow-up. For what it may be worth, Phoenix at least seemed open to the idea in previous interviews and he had tossed around some ideas with Phillips. We’ll be sure to keep you posted as any further details on Joker 2 are made available. This news comes to us via The Hollywood Reporter.
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