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Joaquin Phoenix The Joker

Source: Splash News / Splash News

On Tuesday, director Todd Phillips previewed footage for his upcoming Joker movie at CinemaCon, the national convention of theater owners. The following day, the teaser trailer was released to the masses and of course, major commentary ensued.

Joaquin Phoenix will take on the role of the Joker after a slew of notable roles in flicks like The Sisters Brothers, Her, and The Master, which earned him an Academy Award nomination. In the trailer for Joker, Phoenix seems destined to show off his acting chops with an eerie tale of a man pushed to the edge by society. Peep the clip for yourself below.


The trailer immediately received praise from certain folks, with many excited about the film’s psychological elements and acting.


However, along with the praise came numerous debates and random observations. Some veered on the hilarious side while others seemed to get quite heated.

First off, there was some actor spotting throughout the trailer that definitely got people excited. Atlanta stars Brian Tyree Henry and Zazie Beetz especially made waves for a lot of folks…


Robert De Niro also makes a cameo in the trailer as an entertainment host, which caused people to recall his celebrated 1982 role in King of Comedy, directed by Martin Scorsese.


In King of Comedy, De Niro plays a failing comedian who kidnaps a talk show host to boost his fame. It’s possible the deranged elements of the black comedy could make its way into the Joker film.

Fans also couldn’t help but compare the Joker trailer to another Scorsese movie….1976’s Taxi Driver.

In this psychological thriller, De Niro plays a taxi driver with insomnia who plots the assassination of a presidential candidate and the rescue of an underaged sex slave from her pimp. In the flick, De Niro’s character, Travis Bickle, keeps a diary similar to the one Phoenix keeps in the Joker trailer.

Twitter users immediately started making the comparisons…


With the psychological elements of the Joker trailer, it was difficult not to politicize the movie either. Debates were already brewing about what it means to have a mentally disturbed White man go violent.


Then finally, much of the talk wasn’t so much about who was in the movie, but who was missing.

And it seems folks still can’t let go of the late great Heath Ledger, who played the Joker in 2008’s The Dark Knight.


Things got pretty heated…


Some people even brought Jared Leto‘s Joker from Suicide Squad into the fight.


Then, there were those who tried to play mediator…


No matter how you feel about the trailer, it’s clear the flick is going to bring the discussion when it hits theaters on October 4.

What do you think? Will you be paying for a ticket, or is the joke on them?

Why So Serious? New ‘Joker’ Trailer Sparks MULTIPLE Debates On Social Media  was originally published on