Filmmaker Todd Phillips is making a habit of revealing some tantalizing images from his highly anticipated new film Joker, and yet another one has been unveiled on his Instagram. Phillips offered up the very first looks at Joaquin Phoenix both in and out of makeup in the lead role of “Arthur” in the DC Comics adaptation previously, just before set photos and set videos began leaking. Indeed, Phillips knew he was about to begin some location shooting and the paparazzi snaps were unavoidable, so he wisely decided to reveal official looks at the actor on his own terms.
This new image shows an actor we believe to be Phoenix sitting around in clown makeup. Unsurprisingly, clowns appear to be a major part of Joker, which is a standalone spinoff unconnected to the existing DCEU. Phillips’ film reimagines the origin story of the titular Batman villain and is set in 1970s New York City. Thus far we’ve seen Phoenix out of makeup messing with actor Glenn Fleshler in traditional clown makeup, as well as set videos of a number of people in clown makeup terrorizing a subway car alongside Phoenix in what appears to be his official Joker makeup.
So we can presume a few things about these snaps, keeping in mind that these are all presumptions and we know nothing for sure. The comedy world is rumored to play a role in the film, so it’s possible Arthur is an up-and-coming clown or vaudeville performer of some sort, which is how he’s first introduced to the idea of clown makeup. Or maybe clowns play a minor role in the film, or maybe this snap isn’t of Phoenix at all. Who knows?
For now, it’s kind of fun to take in these images without context. No doubt more will be coming—we still have first looks at Robert De Niro and Marc Maron to look forward to. Take a look at the latest Joker image below.