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De Niro’s Interest in Joaquin Phoenix’s Joker Movie Points to a Different Kind of Comic Book Movie

Regardless of what you think about the larger DCEU, one little corner of the Universe continues to get more intriguing by the day. Joaquin Phoenix’s Joker movie got another potential feather in its cap when news broke that film legend Robert De Niro was in talks to join the cast. The Joker film would mark De Niro’s first foray into the comic book world.

The news also came with a few juicy plot details on the as-yet-untitled movie. According to Variety, the plot will pull inspiration from Martin Scorsese’s controversial King of Comedy. In the 1982 satire, Robert De Niro plays a struggling comedian who kidnaps a talk show host played by Jerry Lewis. Should he accept the part, it would be De Niro’s turn to play the captive TV personality while Phoenix’s Joker spun out of control.

Needless to say, the possibility of a film anchored by such titanic talents is too irresistible to ignore, no matter how much you hated Justice League (which I get). Even though Robert De Niro’s latest efforts have been more miss than hit, the iconic actor can still be counted on when he’s given the right material and room to run.

Rumors persist that Deadpool 2 breakout Zazie Beets may join the cast as well in an unidentified role.

The Joker film is being shepherded through production by Todd Phillips, who co-wrote the script with Oscar-nominated writer Scott Silver (The Fighter). Phillips may have made his bones as a comedy director, but his flair for action has always been apparent, and his skill for telling a solid story is getting better and better. He may be known for The Hangover and Old School, but Phillips undoubtedly has a good dark action film in him.

With the talent being assembled on screen (and the growing rift between this one-shot project and the larger DCEU) there’s more and more reason to get excited about Joaquin’s next project.