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Report: Martin Scorsese Will Produce a 'Hard-Boiled' Version of the Joker's Origin Story

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At last, the Joker is getting his own movie. It’ll star a yet-to-be-cast actor, good news for anyone who was turned off by Jared Leto’s interpretation of the character in Suicide Squad. And it’ll be an origin story that pays stylistic homage to 1980s Martin Scorsese films—with the legendary director himself producing.

Deadline got the scoop, reporting that the project is still in “the early stages” at Warner Bros and DC, but that Todd Phillips (The Hangover) and Scott Silver (8 Miles) are penning the script, with Phillips set to direct and act as co-producer with Scorsese. It will be an origin story styled as “a gritty and grounded hard-boiled crime film set in early-’80s Gotham City that isn’t meant to feel like a DC movie as much as one of Scorsese’s films from that era, like Taxi Driver, Raging Bull or The King Of Comedy.”


That actually sounds rather inspired, and while it’s hard to picture the guy from The Hangover series tackling something in this vein, having Scorsese aboard lends the project a ton of credibility. And since the film “isn’t part of any other iteration,” that means it will star someone other than Leto—though he’ll still reprise the character in Suicide Squad 2 (if it ever gets made) and the Harley Quinn movie (ditto). An origin story suggests a younger actor, though who it’ll be is anyone’s guess at this point.