Todd Phillips Reportedly Returning To Co-Write Joker 2
Despite occasional denials, a sequel to Joker has always been on the cards due to its enormous critical and commercial success. We recently heard that Joker 2 was likely under active development as part of Warner Bros.’ and DC’s long-term slate of expected releases, albeit without necessarily crossing over into the mainstream franchise. Now, The Direct are claiming, via THR, that director Todd Phillips is being brought in to co-write the screenplay for the project.
One of the results of Phillips coming on board is that Joaquin Phoenix might be more easily tempted to reprise his role as Arthur Fleck, despite the steep price tag this could create for the studio. In terms of what Joker 2 might focus on, there’ve been various hints about story directions, including an Arkham Asylum setting and the introduction of more villains from the Batman mythology.
Back in 2019, when plans for a Joker follow-up were still at a nascent stage, we heard that the plot would explore Fleck’s rise through the criminal underworld, rather than his further descent into madness. However, the relatively self-contained scope of the initial film, and its ambiguity over how much is actually taking place in its lead’s imagination, may well mean that we get a very different perspective on Phoenix’s character.
In addition, there’s been talk about an expanded JokerVerse that could bring in a separate Batman from Robert Pattinson, and establish its own unique continuity. From today’s reports, then, it seems Todd Phillips remains key to WB’s vision for Joker, even if he might not end up being behind the camera this time. Still, it’s likely that there’ll be a long wait for Joker 2 to move out of early development, although a confirmation of Phoenix’s return would bring things a lot closer to reality.