Joker is a runaway freight train at the box office as the film continues to stack that money. Those iconic stairs in the Bronx have become a tourist attraction, and apparently, a big enough deal that SNL included the location in Weekend Update this week. They mentioned the burgeoning popularity and made special not that they have become, “a tourist attraction for couples where the girlfriend doesn’t get a say.” Now, that’s a bit harsh, but the demographic shift of visitors to that neighborhood has become a massive point of conversation. Only one week ago, a man from the Bronx got tired of the constant flow of tourists and decided to toss some eggs at the people he looked at as outsiders. He reasoned that if they weren’t contributing to the neighborhood, they could go ahead and leave. Social media got a hold of the clip and it went viral as many sounded off on the increasing popularity of that area of the Bronx due to the movie.
For those interested, the staircase is located on the corner of Shakespeare and Anderson in Highbridge. Since the release of Joker, the steady stream of fans has not stopped. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has even chimed in on the situation. She represents New York’s 14th Congressional District and grew up in the Bronx. Ocasio-Cortez told TMZ, “When I was growing up, everyone would tell us to stay away from those steps or go with a friend or whatever. The Bronx is much safer now and I’m happy to say that but I think the way a lot of us feel is ‘keep your Instagram posts outside of the Boogie Down. This is for us.’”
Ocasio-Cortez added, “People have been doing that dance for a long time,” she says. She also suspects it will remain a tourist attraction, but says, “We got to own it though. We can’t let anyone take that away from us”
It doesn’t look like that torrent of people flocking to the stairs will be stopping anytime soon as Joker continues to break records and cash registers across the world. Instagram users, wannabe photographers, and average fans have been a fixture of that staircase since the release of the movie. Residents in the area have put up flyers near the stairs that read, "It is disrespectful to treat our community and residents as a photo opportunity for your social media or 'it' moment. This is real life, not a movie and we're not jokin'."
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, 2022.