The fact that the Joker‘s backstory has always been left intentionally vague offers almost complete freedom for comic book writers, video game designers, filmmakers and actors to do whatever they want with the Clown Prince of Crime, as long as he sticks close to the expected tropes fans want to see from the iconic character.
There’s got to be the makeup, green hair, maniacal laugh and at least a little purple in his ensemble, not to mention his antagonizing of Batman. There’ve been more than a few occasions in comic book history where the Joker has straddled the divide between good and evil as well, but in live-action at least, he’s always been the bad guy.
That hasn’t stopped Jack Nicholson from leveraging his star power and charisma, Heath Ledger cementing his version as one of the 21st Century’s most famous cinematic figures or Joaquin Phoenix winning an Academy Award, but as of yet, none of the big screen Jokers have possessed much in the way of what you’d call redeeming qualities.
However, that could all be set to change based on the latest rumor from insider Daniel Richtman, with the tipster reporting that Jared Leto wants his Jester of Genocide to be positioned as an antihero in the DCEU should he end up returning after Zack Snyder’s Justice League. We’ve already seen that a tenuous alliance appears to have been formed between the Joker and Batman in the Knightmare timeline, but who knows if fans would buy Leto’s divisive spin on the character in such a role?
There are no guarantees at this stage that he’ll be back after Justice League, either, but the likelihood increases significantly if Leto’s Joker gets a much warmer reception the second time around and it’s not like the canonical DCEU has stuck rigidly to comic book convention so far anyways.