Joaquin Phoenix now officially confirmed as Joker

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Warner Bros have officially given the new Joker origin movie the go-ahead, with Gladiator star Joaquin Phoenix being handed the lead role. This will give Warner Bros. another chance to redeem itself following the disappointing Justice League and Suicide Squad films; the latter of which was widely criticized for its handling of Jared Leto's Joker. His version is described as an "exploration of a man disregarded by society [that] is not only a gritty character study, but also a broader cautionary tale".

The studio have released a statement confirming the project is underway, with The Hangover's Todd Phillips to direct the film which is "meant to be different from comic book superhero movies".

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Joaquin will begin shooting the movie in NY in September.

Reports suggest that this will be quite a low budget movie too, with a price around the $50-60m mark.

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Phoenix has previously discussed Leto's work as the Joker and revealed he would take the character in a different direction than his predecessors.

The Joker is the kind of complex comic book character who never seems to get old with fans. "I think it's cool when people do that".

Official plot details are still under wraps but the Joker origin film is to be a gritty and grounded crime film set in 1980s Gotham City, separate from DC's current shared cinematic universe in an effort to create new and unique storylines as the studio expands DC canon.

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