The Joker Origin Movie in the Works

‘Batman: The Killing Joke’ | Warner Bros. Animation

Some very interesting DC movie news to report.

It appears that DC villain The Joker will be the focus of a new movie, one that will offer an origin story and be set apart from Warner Bros’ DCEU (Batman v Superman, Suicide Squad, Justice League, etc).

According to Deadline, Warner Bros. has hired Todd Phillips, known for his Hangover trilogy, Old School, Due Date and last year’s War Dogs, to direct and co-write the film’s screenplay with Oscar nominated scribe Scott Silver (8 Mile, The Fighter). Deadline reports that Phillips will be producing the film alongside Martin Scorsese, although THR reports that Scorsese’s “involvement is far from assured.”

The origin story will be set in Gotham City in the early ’80s and is being described as “a gritty and grounded hard-boiled crime film” in the vein of Scorsese’s works from the era, à la Taxi Driver and Raging Bull.

While Jared Leto is expected to return as The Joker in the in-the-works Harley Quinn spinoff and the sequel to Suicide squad, the character here will be recast with possibly a young actor.

This could be the first of a number of projects under a label that is currently in development for WB’s DC Entertainment properties. The idea for the label would be to house films that aren’t connected to the studio’s tentpole, universe-focused outings. Perhaps these lower budget projects could provide room for more experimental, edgier DC films?

Stay tuned as more comes to light.

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