Heath Ledger‘s Oscar-winning performance as The Joker in Christopher Nolan‘s The Dark Knight was the iconic, hands-down, be-all-end-all take on the character … Or was it Jared Leto‘s version in Suicide Squad? This is the type of discussion that can lead to fisticuffs among fanboy friends without any clear winner ever being decided. Enter “Minute Match-Ups”, a series of YouTube videos dedicated to finding out just which pop culture icons would ultimately win in a dramatically re-enacted duel. The latest installment: “Joker vs. Joker.”
Hailing from Ismahawk, and award-winning writer/co-director Hisonni Johnson, who long-time readers of the site should recognize from our previous spotlights on his work, “Joker vs. Joker” sees Noah Schefflin stepping into the role made famous by Ledger, while Jan Flugum goes method for Leto’s metal-grinned mobster. Charlie Starling also plays a surprise role that should be a fun reveal for fans, and folks familiar with DC Comics’ recent runs should also recognize a nice Easter egg at the end of the video, which you can watch below!
See who comes out on top in “Joker vs Joker”:
Be sure to let us know your thoughts in the comments!
For me, Johnson’s production value has always been the top of the tops, especially considering that these are independent projects without the support of studio budgets. And speaking of support, co-director Danny Shephard, DP Jeremy Le, and make-up artist and hair stylist Chrissy Lynn Kyle deserve huge props for their contributions. Props and set design were done by Pixel Arts Props’ Hal Rydberg, and the awesome costumes were donated by Cosplay Sky.
Johnson also spoke to THR about the project, especially concerning Schefflin’s earlier apprehension on taking on the iconic role made famous by the late Ledger:
“He was really nervous and didn’t want to do it. How can you do that role justice? I think his goal was to make people remember Heath and be a reminder for how much you enjoyed that role.”
Johnson’s also hoping that this showcase of his talents, just one example of many in his young career, will lead to a bigger stage:
“My only hope is to have the fans look at it and go, ‘Why isn’t this guy working for Warner Bros.? I love Man of Steel. I love Batman v Superman. But critically, they are not performing how the studio needs, and if I can make a Superman fan film or a Joker fan film or anything that connects with the audience you never know. Maybe Warner Bros. will look for that fresh breath.”
If this is what Johnson & Co. can do with a shoestring budget, just imagine what awesome spectacles they could get up to with an entity like Warner Bros. behind them. Here’s hoping they get that opportunity!
Some of Johnson’s recent accomplishments include shooting TV spots starring Donnie Yen for the Chinese release of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, and a 2017 Official Selection at Cinequest Film Festival for the feature film Prodigy. His upcoming projects feature YouTube pilots for Supermanand Green Lantern pilot, the latter produced from his award-winning script, plus a feature film titled Take Out Girl. Keep an eye out for this rising talent!
In the meantime, be sure to check out some behind-the-scenes production shots and stills from the finished project below, shared with us by Johnson himself: