Today brought the report that DC and Warner Bros. are moving forward with a Joker sequel, following the milestone billion-dollar success of Todd Phillips origin story. However, like so many things on the Internet, that announcement may have been presumptuous. There's now a follow-up report claiming that Joker 2 has not yet been given the greenlight that early reports claim it has. In fact, Deadline goes so far as to go straight at THR's first report by name, claiming it is no less than "flat false." While the possibility of Joker 2 is stated to be a real one, there is no sequel happening at this time.
Specifically, Deadline claims that as it currently stands with Joker 2, "no deals for a sequel, nor even any negotiations with director Todd Phillips or his co-writer Scott Silver."
The report goes on to cite the fact that the THR story hinged on the anecdote of Todd Phillips meeting with Warner Bros. film chief Toby Emmerich, for a proposed series of DC villain origin films. That meeting is now what is referred to as "flat false," with the added note that there is currently "Phillips hasn't even considered overseeing other DC character films. In fact, Deadline flat-out calls the THR article "Clickbait," which is certain to start a heated debate over sources, between the two big trades. Yikes.
Here's the ultimate conclusion of where things stand, according to Deadline:
"No one is saying a Joker sequel won't happen someday. But multiple sources said nothing has happened yet, and that Phillips and co-writer Scott Silver have made no real moves to draft the further dark rise of Joaquin Phoenix's Arthur Fleck character, or even to make a deal to do that."
While it's understandable why Warner Bros. wants to move forward with a Joker sequel, given the first film's status as a billion-dollar earner, and title as the most profitable comic book movie of all time. However, the very nature of Joker's story makes it incredibly tricky to do a sequel that doesn't completely invalidate the first film's ambiguous story and questions of imagination vs. reality. Still, both Phillips and Joaquin Phoenix have previously stated there are possible ideas to work into a sequel, so indeed this door is not completely shut, yet.
Joker is now in theaters. Upcoming DC Movies include Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) on February 7, 2020, Wonder Woman 1984 on June 5, 2020, The Batman on June 25, 2021, The Suicide Squad on August 6, 2021, and Aquaman 2 on December 16, 2020.