New 'Joker' Set Video Reveals Joaquin Phoenix's Tears of a Clown

Joker is becoming a more and more intriguing DC movie project, and mainstream audiences have certainly stood up and taken notice of the film, ever since we got our first look at Joaquin Phoenix in some iconic-looking Joker clown makeup.

A new set video may explain why Warner Bros. and DC Films ultimately decided to release that promo footage of Phoenix in clown makeup - because it's exactly what paparazzi were going to start seeing, as Joker seems to be filming some key scenes with Phoenix in full makeup.

As you can see in the video above, Phoenix's character, Arthur Fleck, seems to be in full clown attire, having seemingly worked some kind of gig. He's seen in a dingy-looking Gotham City phone booth, taking a phone call that seems to take a very tragic turn. Whatever is said on the other end of the line, it leads to Arthur seemingly having an emotional breakdown; he ends up doubled-over, sobbing, as the scene ends.

Batman fans know that this scene could be a pivotal point in Joker. The film is said to be drawing from Alan Moore's milestone standalone story, "The Killing Joke", which explores the Joker's (non-canon) origin. In that story, Joker starts out a engineer who gives up a good career to become a down-on-his-luck comedian. With his wife pregnant, and money short, the man agrees to help some local gangsters plan a heist, using his access to the chemical plant where he used to work for their robbery.

Here's where the connection to this Joker set video comes in: While planning the robbery, the failing comedian gets word that his wife has died in a random household accident, and that his efforts to become a crook are now all in vain. It's the first crucial fracture in the man's mind; the second occurs when the gangsters force him into the robbery anyway, resulting in a chemical accident that forever changes the man's appearance, making him The Joker.


What's so dark and nihilistic about Moore's origin story is how it emphasizes the random (and often brutally ironic) cruelty of life - a "bad joke" that's the real core metaphor of the Joker's persona. It's exactly the kind of dark comedy/drama that would seemingly attract Hangover and Due Date director Todd Phillps - and the sort of iconic moment that would help root the unique creative approach to Joker in some rich comic book source material.

What's your take on this scene shown in the video above? Let us know in the comments!

Joker will be in theaters on October 4, 2019.