Director Todd Phillips has put an end to all speculation regarding which comic-book(s) his upcoming film Joker takes its inspiration from. Turns out, it is an entirely original story and Phillips is aware that people are going to be mad about this.
While speaking to Empire, Phillips said, “We didn’t follow anything from the comic-books, which people are gonna be mad about. We just wrote our own version of where a guy like Joker might come from. That’s what was interesting to me. We’re not even doing Joker, but the story of becoming Joker. It’s about this man.”
Joker, starring Joaquin Phoenix in the titular role, is an origin story of the famous Batman villain. It was expected to take at least a few cues from Alan Moore’s graphic novel Batman: The Killing Joke. Moore’s story is the most well-known Joker origin story in comics.
Unlike other comic-book movies today, Joker is made on an estimate budget of just 55 million dollars. It is described as first and foremost a character study and is about a downtrodden comedian called Arthur Fleck who rises to become a Gotham’s criminal mastermind.
The synopsis states, “Joker centers around the iconic arch-nemesis and is an original, standalone story not seen before on the big screen. The exploration of Arthur Fleck (Joaquin Phoenix), a man disregarded by society, is not only a gritty character study, but also a broader cautionary tale.”
Todd Phillips has written the story with Oscar winner Scott Silver.