Todd Phillips also said that "people are gonna be mad" about this news.

By Rachel Yang
July 08, 2019 at 07:03 PM EDT
Warner Bros.
10/04/19
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  • Movie
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The upcoming Joker movie starring Joaquin Phoenix will be a wholly original take on the iconic Gotham villain.

“We didn’t follow anything from the comic books, which people are gonna be mad about,” writer-director Todd Phillips told Empire. “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.”

His comments seem to dash fan speculation that the movie might follow portions of Alan Moore and Brian Bolland’s legendary The Killing Joke, the comic that provided the origin story for the Clown Prince of Crime. The book told of an aspiring comedian whose mob dealings eventually land him into a vat of chemicals at the hands of Batman.

Although the trailer may have appeared close to the source material, Phillips’ statement makes it seem that the narrative will be different. Regardless, Phillips made it clear that his team has full faith in Phoenix’s ability to make the role his own. The Walk the Line actor was his first choice to play the Joker.

“I think he’s the greatest actor,” Phillips said. “We had a photo of him above our computer while we were writing. We constantly thought, ‘God, imagine if Joaquin actually does this.'”

Joker comes to theaters on Oct. 4.

Related content:

Director Todd Phillips and star Joaquin Phoenix put a new spin on Batman's arch-nemesis.
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