Arts & Entertainment

Joaquin Phoenix Is the Perfect Actor to Save the Joker

He is the top choice to take the mantle of DC's biggest villain.
IMAGE DC Entertainment, Getty Images
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DC films have been hardly treading water since the completion of Christopher Nolan's groundbreaking Dark Knight trilogy in 2012. Four of the five films released in the last six years have been absolute disappointments, and the studio is working furiously to come up with new ideas for its floundering comic book universe. Even though Method Actor Jared Leto's Joker was more of a pop-punk Macklemore, DC is still counting on its most recognizable villain to help drag the franchise out of its current rut. It has announced plans for a prestige-leaning stand-alone Joker movie from director Todd Phillips (The Hangover) and produced by Martin Scorsese. While this film's association with the greater D.C Universe is weird, this will be more of a gritty origin story for The Joker inspired by Scorsese's films. 

To add even more cachet to this comic book movie, Oscar nominee Joaquin Phoenix has reportedly agreed to take the role of The Joker. As Variety reports, "Phillips had met with Phoenix before the new year and was just waiting for the studio’s go-ahead." 

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This film will exist outside of the universe of Justice League and Suicide Squad, where Method Actor Jared Leto plays an extremely Mall Goth Joker. But Joaquin might be the perfect actor to refresh the famous role. For better or worse, he is an infamous method actor, on trend with Heath Ledger and, regrettably, Method Actor Jared Leto. Joaquin is also a noted weirdo, who can be truly dark and unsettling when he needs to be. And that might be everything this franchise needs to help us forget about DC's many missteps in recent years.

This story originally appeared on Esquire.com. Minor edits have been made by the Esquiremag.ph editors.

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Matt Miller
Matt Miller is the Associate Culture Editor for Esquire.com
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