Cue up “Tell Me It’s Real” by K-Ci & JoJo, because one of the Warner Bros. standalone Joker movies is really going into production. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Joaquin Phoenix is now locked in to star in the Todd Phillips–directed picture, which will start shooting this fall in New York City. Phillips also co-wrote the script with Scott Silver, and it’s described as an “exploration of a man disregarded by society [that] is not only a gritty character study, but also a broader cautionary tale.” THR also reports that with a leaner budget somewhere around $55 million, the movie won’t be a supersized DC production, unlike the Batman or Superman movies. It’s also aiming to be “darker and more experimental in tone,” which also sounds like a description of Joaquin Phoenix, so that makes sense with casting. There’s no release date yet, but Warner Bros. would apparently like to have it out as early as late next year if all the stars properly align.
Joaquin Phoenix. Photo: Mat Hayward/Getty Images for Seattle Interna