You probably already know that this incarnation of Batman's greatest adversary isn't related to the overblown, undercooked, overhyped DC Extended Universe. You're probably already aware that Joaquin Phoenix plays the titular character and that his performance is winning a lot of accolades. Don't forget that Heath Ledger won the Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his portrayal of the character in The Dark Knight in 2009. Will Phoenix's portrayal of the Clown Prince of Crime in Todd Phillips' 2019 movie win the Best Actor award in 2020? There's no way of predicting that but what we can bring you is six things you need to know before seeing The Joker.
The character wasn't supposed to be a mainstay of the comic book series. Writer Bob Kane or artist Bill Finger introduced the world to the Joker in Batman #1 back in 1940. He appeared in nine of the first twelve issues but originally he was supposed to be killed but editor Whitney Ellsworth realised they had created an arch-nemesis for Batman so the suggestion came that his knife wound was not fatal after all.
The character's origin is hotly debated. Both the writer and illustrator said in interviews over the years that they were inspired by the 1928 German Expressionist movie The Man Who Laughs, which features a main character with a permanent grin. That's been refuted by inker Jerry Robinson who says that playing card he drew reminded them of The Man Who Laughs movie so he's claiming to be the inspiration behind one of the most iconic comic book villains in history.
This is the Joker's film so don't be disappointed when the Dark Knight fails to show up. Bruce Wayne's father appears in the movie but there's no sign of his son. That's no bad thing. This movie allows the Joker to take centre stage. The movie is set in Gotham so there's every chance that Joaquin Phoenix's version of the Joker will meet up with Robert Pattinson's Batman at some point in the future.
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