Joaquin Phoenix’s Joker was a standalone experience. Or was it? Director Todd Philips and actor Joaquin Phoenix have remained adamant that the artistic vision for Joker spanned one film. However, that movie made a billion dollars. It was loved by fans. And, while the movie wasn’t officially part of the DC Extended Universe, it is still a Batman movie. Comic book movies have sequels, especially when they do well. Fans expect this. With all of that, it becomes hard to believe that we’ll never Joaquin Phoenix play Joker again. Insider Daniel Richtman has now told his Patreon that he has heard Phoenix will, in fact, be coming back for more Joker.
Of course, this is a rumor, and we’ve seen plenty of those. He also doesn’t say whether Joaquin Phoenix would be returning for Joker 2, as many fans have hoped, or whether another project would be imagined. He also makes no claims about Todd Philips, the director who brought us the original.
On November 20, 2019, there was a strong rumor Joker 2 was officially happening. The very next day, Todd Philips debunked the rumor with a strong no. While Todd Philips and Joaquin Phoenix were said to be discussing the possibility of a sequel throughout the press tour, neither has wanted to move forward. They both loved the rich story in Joker and have expressed concerns about creating a sequel that would do the first film justice.
There are plenty of people who agree with the decision to keep a sequel from happening. Joaquin Phoenix had a standout performance as Joker. He won an Academy Award for Best Actor in the role. The movie had a creative vision. There are many who feel the same concerns Todd Philips has expressed about compromising that. It’s rare for a movie to be a commercial success and a hit with critics. There’s a legacy in keeping Joker as a standalone.
While the legacy of success for the movie is all well and good, that doesn’t rule out Joaquin Phoenix moving forward. A few months ago, there was a rumor Phoenix was in talks for two Joker sequels. Moreover, the rumor claimed that Todd Philips was on board. As many times as Todd Philips has publicly claimed he won’t do it, it’s difficult to believe he won’t eventually bend.
If we assume Todd Philips is standing strong though, it does open up other questions. Could Joaquin Phoenix move forward on a Joker project without him? Though Joker was a standalone and not part of the DC Extended Universe, could that change? Could Phoenix potentially play Joker in other Batman movies if a writer got creative enough to play with that? Marvel has certainly been slipping around with their separate story universes by opening up the Multiverse. Could DC find a way? Could a billion dollars in box office earnings make that happen?
These are definitely all conversations executives at Warner Bros are certainly having. Whether Todd Philips wants to budge or not, that doesn’t mean Joaquin Phoenix isn’t meeting with Warner Bros to at least entertain some of those talks.