Joaquin Phoenix to return to big screen as Joker in 2024 sequel

Actor Joaquin Phoenix in a still from the the original movie, Joker. PHOTO: WARNER BROS

LOS ANGELES (REUTERS) - A motion picture sequel to the Oscar-winning psychological thriller Joker, based on one of the world's best known comic book villains, is set for release in cinemas on Oct 4, 2024, a spokesman for film distributor Warner Bros said on Wednesday (Aug 3).

Joker: Folie a Deux will see Joaquin Phoenix reprise his role as the title character, a role which earned him the Academy Award as best actor in the original 2019 film, depicting an origin story for the arch enemy of DC Comics' superhero Batman.

The 2019 film, which was Oscar-nominated in the best film category and won for best original score, as well as for best lead actor, was directed and produced by Todd Phillips, who co-wrote the script with Scott Silver.

The story charted the psychological descent of the film's protagonist, failed party clown and wannabe comedian Arthur Fleck, and the social forces that transformed him from a dejected loner into a cold-blooded killer who inspires a wave of violence in the fictional metropolis of Gotham City.

No further details about the sequel were immediately made available by Warner Bros. But Hollywood trade publication Variety has reported that the new production will be a musical, with Lady Gaga expected to play Joker's co-conspirator, Harley Quinn.

Phoenix, 47, known for playing brooding or emotionally troubled characters, was widely acclaimed for a role which many critics hailed as one of the most chilling and disturbing performances in modern film.

He was the second performer to earn an Academy Award for playing the Joker, following in the footsteps of Heath Ledger, who posthumously won the Oscar for best supporting actor for his 2008 rendition of the character in The Dark Knight.

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