Joker is now the highest-grossing film ever to feature DC Comics' "Clown Prince of Crime." After this weekend, Joker's worldwide box office total will climb to $1.017 billion. That's enough for the Joaquin Phoenix-led film to surpass The Dark Knight ($1.004 billion), which starred Heath Ledger as the Joker. Joker director Todd Phillips posted a video to Instagram thanking fans for helping Joker cross the $1 billion mark. "Thank You Fans." Phillips posted the video with the caption "Wow. What a ride this has been!! Thank you to the fans! #joker" Joker is the first R-rating movie to cross that threshold.
Joker first appeared on the big screen in Batman: The Movie in 1966. The film is based on the Batman television series, and so featured Cesar Romero reprised his role from the show. Jack Nicholson played Joker in 1989's Batman, which grossed $411.5 million. Jared Leto appeared as the Joker in 2016's Suicide Squad, which grossed $746.8 million. Two animated theatrical released have also featured the Joker. Batman: Mask of the Phantasm featured the Joker from Batman: The Animated Series voiced by Mark Hamill. It grossed $5.8 million in 1993. The LEGO Batman Movie in 2017 featured the voice of Zach Galifianakis in the role. It earned $312 million.
Some speculate as to whether Phoenix's Arthur Fleck is the same Joker featured in these other films. Phoenix addressed these theories. "I mean, to me, yes, he is," Phoenix said. "There was something that was great about the mystery of it,. Todd and I talked a lot about how this is one of the few opportunities that you have where people don't expect to know the definitive truth of the character — and not only that, they probably don't want it. Usually, the demands of the movie are the opposite. I said, 'We have to take advantage of that. Why would we not?'"
What do you think of Joker becoming the Joker's biggest box office success ever? Let us know what you think about it in the comments section. Joker is now playing in theaters.
Upcoming DC Films 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, 2022.