JOKER Director Todd Phillips Likens Comic Books To Shakespeare As He Discusses Leto, Ledger, And Nicholson

JOKER Director Todd Phillips Likens Comic Books To Shakespeare As He Discusses Leto, Ledger, And Nicholson

JOKER Director Todd Phillips Likens Comic Books To Shakespeare As He Discusses Leto, Ledger, And Nicholson

Attending TIFF after a stellar showing at the Venice Film Festival, director Todd Phillips was asked about the riskiness of following Heath Ledger's masterful Joker (Has the world forgotten Jared Leto?).

Todd Phillips is the man of the hour right now as Joker marches toward its October 4 premiere after winning the Golden Lion at this year's Venice Film Festival. Past winners of the award include Roma, The Shape of Water, The Wrestler, and Brokeback Mountain

What these films all have in common is that they went on to be nominated in several categories at the Oscars, an achievement that many critics expect Joker to repeat.

Fresh from all the unexpected success at Venice, Phillips walked the red carpet at the Toronto International Film Festival where he was asked about revisiting the "sacred ground" of Heath Ledger's character (it seems the interviewer has completely wiped Suicide Squad from his mind).  

Phillips responded, "No. I lovie it [The Dark Knight]. And Jared Leto followed it and I loved that too. Jack Nicholson proceeded it and I loved that. In the states, comic books are our Shakespeare it seems and you can do many, many versions of Hamlet. There will be many more versions of Joker in the future."



Director Todd Phillips “Joker” centers around the iconic arch nemesis and is an original, standalone fictional story not seen before on the big screen.  Phillips’ exploration of Arthur Fleck, who is indelibly portrayed by Joaquin Phoenix, is of a man struggling to find his way in Gotham’s fractured society.  A clown-for-hire by day, he aspires to be a stand-up comic at night…but finds the joke always seems to be on him.  Caught in a cyclical existence between apathy and cruelty, Arthur makes one bad decision that brings about a chain reaction of escalating events in this gritty character study.
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