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Joker: Joaquin Phoenix Was the Only Actor Asked to Star in Title Role – IGN – IGN

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Joker writer and director Todd Phillips has revealed that the film was written for Joaquin Phoenix and no other actors were sought for the role of the classic DC comic villain.Talking to the New York Times, Phillips dismissed rumours that Warner Bros. had approached Leonardo DiCaprio to play the Joker. “We wrote the movie for Joaquin,” Phillips said.

See what we thought of Joker in our video review below.

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However, while the film had been written with Phoenix in mind, convincing him took many months of conversation. “He was not keen on jumping into costume in any comic-book movie,” Phillips said.

“I kept waiting for him to just say, ‘O.K., I’m in,’ And he never did that,” said Phillips. “You just never get a yes. All you get is more questions.”

Phoenix explained that “It wasn’t an easy decision, but [Phillips] kept saying, ‘Let’s just be bold. Let’s do something.’”

The New York Times reports that it took three months of Phillips repeatedly visiting Phoenix’s home to convince him on the role. The two would go on to have disagreements on how Phoenix should play the character – Phoenix saw the Joker as a heavy-set character, while Phillips envisioned him as very skinny – but the two eventually brought the character to the screen in a film that won this year’s Golden Lion award at the Venice International Film Festival.

The Many Origin Stories of the Joker

In other news, don’t expect to see Phoenix’s Joker cross paths with Robert Pattinson’s new Batman, and find out why Venice Film Festival’s director believes Joker will be in the running for some of the Oscar’s top awards.
Matt Purslow is IGN’s UK News and Entertainment Writer. You can follow him on Twitter.

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