This upcoming Joker origins movie is shaping up to have a pretty good cast. Possibly joining Joaquin Phoenix and Zazie Beetz from Deadpool 2, Robert De Niro has officially begun negotiations for a significant role in the stand-alone DC film. While it’s not certain what role he is going to play, we do know this is a step in a different direction for De Niro, who has typically had roles in “grounded movies”, not fantasy-based ones.
Still, it would be absolutely amazing to have another Golden Globe or Oscar winning actor on set with the incredibly talented Phoenix. Most well known for his stint in gangster movies such as The Godfather and Casino, this could be a fun new genre that De Niro is figuring he might as well step into in this stage of his career.
Joaquin Phoenix has also shied away from comic book films, although I wouldn’t say his movies are all “grounded”; did you see Her? Either way, Phoenix is positive that this movie shouldn’t be categorized as a “superhero” film, “I wouldn’t say it’s a superhero movie, or a studio movie or a…it feels unique, and I think more than anything, and probably the most important thing, is Todd seems very passionate about it and very giving, and so that’s exciting. I think, underneath the excitement of these films, and the size of them, there are these incredible characters that are dealing with real-life struggles.”
It seems like maybe director Todd Phillips is going for a Nolan Trilogy feel here, where comic book characters were used in a more “realistic” and tangible sense than what we are seeing in the current DCEU. Underneath who the Joker is, we have someone who clearly has some sort of mental and personality disorder and the film could heavily focus on that rather than him being a stark raving mad clown. I think the most important thing to remember about the Joker is that his “craziness” is his advantage and he’s in fact incredibly intelligent. I think Phoenix could pull it off and hopefully the negotiations with De Niro go well.