Over the course of the weekend, Joker is expected to become the first R-rated movie ever to hit $1 billion at the global box office, and in recognition of this moment, director Todd Phillips has taken to Instagram with a new video thanking the filmgoing public.
The short promo offers a barrage of quotes from social media users praising the Clown Prince of Crime’s solo movie, followed by a reference to the film’s billion-dollar box office and some all-caps text that reads, “THANK YOU FANS.” The video, viewable below, was shared with the following caption:
“Wow. What a ride this has been!! Thank you to the fans!”
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Indeed, it was an unusual, often difficult journey for Phillips’ latest feature, which was reportedly met with some resistance from the bosses at Warner Bros. (and Jared Leto) even before going into production. Upon release, the film received a divided response from critics, as well as inspiring many a concerned think piece about the ethics and responsibilities of cinema.
Nonetheless, after winning the Golden Lion at the Venice International Film Festival, Joker went on to exceed Warner’s expectations at the box office, and within weeks of release, became the highest grossing R-rated movie of all time. On top of that, with an estimated budget of just $55 million, the film can also be considered the most profitable comic book flick ever made, beating out the likes of Venom, Deadpool and The Mask in the process.
It’ll be interesting to find out how Warner tries to follow-up all this success, be it with a Joker sequel or another attempt at a gritty R-rated reboot, but in the meantime, we’ll see if the DC brand can maintain its box office momentum when Birds of Prey hits theaters on February 7th, 2020.