Joker has been hailed one of the most divisive films of the decade by critics, but if it had been up to Jared Leto, it would never have happened at all.
According to reports in The Hollywood Reporter, the actor was frustrated when Warner Bros. gave the green light on Todd Phillips’ take on the Batman villain because he was allegedly promised he could continue his take on the character after his debut in Suicide Squad.
Insiders are said to have told the publication that Warner Bros. Led Leto to believe he would get his own standalone Joker movie after the 2016 Suicide Squad release.
The studio then made a U-turn and hired Phillips to direct his own version, which of course, went on to star Joaquin Phoenix.
In fact, he was said to be so pissed off that he complained to his agents at CAA, who also represent Phillips, and asked his music manager Irving Azoff to contact Warner Bros.’ parent company in an effort to get the film canned, allegedly claiming he wasn’t being treated like an Oscar-winning actor.
There’s speculation this could’ve been the reason he left the agency last year, having burned through four different agencies in recent years.
Leto went to great lengths to get into his character as the Joker, terrifying castmates with ‘gifts’, like a live rat for Margot Robbie, bullets to Will Smith and a dead pig to the entire cast during rehearsal. However, it seems the studio weren’t keen on his method acting and reports claim the director wasn’t pleased with his resulting performance.
Now, it seems at this point Leto’s days as the Joker are probably over for good. It’s not likely he will reprise his role for Warner’s forthcoming DC films Birds of Prey, a spin-off centred around Harley Quinn, or in James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad, which is due for release in 2021.
A source told the Hollywood Reporter:
How do you play the Joker you established following [Phoenix]? It kind of ends his Joker run.
If you have a story you want to tell send it to UNILAD via [email protected]
Emma Rosemurgey is an NCTJ trained Journalist who started her career by producing The Royal Rosemurgey newspaper in 2004, which kept her family up to date with the goings on of her sleepy north east village. She graduated from the University of Central Lancashire in Preston and started her career in regional newspapers before joining Tyla (formerly Pretty 52) in 2017, and progressing onto UNILAD in 2019.