Warner Bros. Greenlights Joker Origin Movie With Joaquin Phoenix

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Shooting reportedly starts in September in NY.

Todd Phillips, most well known for his comedies including Old School, Starsky & Hutch and The Hangover, is lined up to direct.

No release date for the film has reportedly been set.

Phoenix, 43, has previously said he wasn't against taking on the role of the Joker after reports named him as the next actor to personify the sinister comic character.

Warner Bros. describes the movie, per THR, as an "exploration of a man disregarded by society [that] is not only a gritty character study, but also a broader cautionary tale".

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The project's budget will be in the $55 million range, which is significantly lower than most superhero movies and suggests a more risky take on the comic book adaptation a la 20th Century Fox's R-rated Deadpool and Logan. The villain is also rumored to appear in the Suicide Squad sequel as well as the standalone Harley Quinn movie.

The film will be written by director Phillips alongside Scott Silver (8 Mile and The Fighter).

The three-time Oscar nominee has some big shoes to fill, following fan-adored interpretations of Batman's arch nemesis from Heath Ledger, Jack Nicholson, Cesar Romero and even Mark Hamill's animated version.

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