Jared Leto says his Joker will make Heath Ledger, Jack Nicholson proud
When Suicide Squad hits theaters next summer, Jared Leto will officially join the long list of actors who’ve donned green hair and a creepy smile to play one of Batman’s greatest adversaries. And although Leto’s take on the Joker may look a bit unconventional, what with the shiny silver grill and the head-to-toe tattoos, he promises that his portrayal will pay tribute to two of the most beloved Joker actors of all time.
Leto shared an image of both Jack Nicholson and Heath Ledger on Instagram on Monday with the caption: “Don’t worry. Leto will make us proud.”
Nicholson appeared opposite Michael Keaton in the 1989 Batman, and Heath Ledger terrorized Gotham in The Dark Knight in 2008.
Leto went all in to play his version of the classic villain, and in addition to sending his cast members Joker-approved gifts (like a pet rat he gave to Margot Robbie, who stars as Harley Quinn), the Oscar-winning actor stayed in character the entire time he was on set.
“There was definitely a period of… detachment,” Leto told Empire in October about his commitment to the role. “I took a pretty deep dive. But this was a unique opportunity and I couldn’t imagine doing it another way. It was fun, playing those psychological games.”
Suicide Squad opens on Aug. 5, 2016.