Todd Phillips’ Joker may have been a bigger hit than Warner Brothers was anticipating. The wholly-original origin story, which stars Joaquin Phoenix in the titular role, has made nearly $750 million at the worldwide box office amidst tons of controversy and contention from critics and audiences alike. And despite what the filmmakers have said in the past, it looks like this phenomenal movie will now be getting a follow-up.
Sources close to We Got This Covered – the same ones who brought us previous confirmed scoops such as Black Mask’s homosexuality in Birds of Prey and Viola Davis’ return for The Suicide Squad, not to mention they also told us that Mahershala Ali was going to play Jim Gordon in The Batman before he had to drop out, which we now know to be true – have informed us that a sequel to Joker is in the early stages of development over at Warner Brothers, with the studio fully intending to continue Arthur Fleck’s path to infamy.
Now, a lot of the complaints revolving around the movie have been about Arthur’s (Phoenix) isolated place within the DC mythology. As was previously mentioned, Phillips’ plan for the character was completely original – albeit with several obvious tie-ins to the classic Scorsese loner-lunatic films – focusing around a disturbed man who becomes absorbed and illuminated by the chaos around him, rather than directly presenting the Clown Prince of Crime persona Batman fans are familiar with. A lot of those concerns will be extinguished by Joker 2, though.
According to our sources, the film, which will take place several years after the events of the 2019 Golden Lion winner, will focus more on Arthur’s rise as a criminal in Gotham City, rather than his descent into madness. Should this idea – which is, in my opinion, not exactly a good one – continue to materialize, it wouldn’t only be a bloodier venture, but it would also be the first sequel of Joaquin Phoenix’s career.
With all this said, the only solace I take in the possibility of Joker 2 is that the actor has been willing to break his career-spanning rule, showing that if he believes it can be done well, then maybe I should, too.