Warner Bros.’ R-rated twist on the comic book movie is expected to pay off. Big time. Early Joker box office predictions are in, and analysts are projecting the film to launch to an $82 million opening weekend when it hits theaters on October 4th, per THR. If the film does hit that high-mark, it’ll be enough to secure a new October box office record, unseating the previous highest opening weekend holder Venom, which debuted to $80.2 million last October.
It’s worth noting that tracking is not always precise, nor does it always pay off. Regardless, it’s what industry insiders use to gauge a film’s upcoming launch, and what the studio uses to decide what the final marketing push will look like in the final weeks before the movie hits theaters.
Recently, Warner Bros. has been leaning on reviews to push Joker, as the film had its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival and then played at the Toronto International Film Festival. While it took the top prize at Venice, reviews out of TIFF were a bit more mixed. Regardless, it has its share of superlatives, and they’re being blasted across the most recent TV spots and social media trailers.
Joaquin Phoenix is undoubtedly a major draw here, and even those who were more lukewarm on the film can’t deny his tremendous performance. The movie is a very violent, dark, and gritty psychological character drama so it’ll be interesting to see what the box office looks like after opening weekend—this is absolutely not The Dark Knight or even Batman v Superman. It’s something far more sinister and character-centric, and comic book diehards may have some qualms with the way in which Phoenix and co-writer/director Todd Phillips approach what’s essentially a wholly original origin story for the iconic DC Comics villain.
That said, interest is at a fever pitch and I would not be surprised if the opening weekend box office was higher than $82 million. It’s unfair to compare it to other DC films like Batman v Superman or Wonder Woman given that this is not only an entirely different kind of film altogether, but it’s also R-rated and thus more restrictive in terms of who can buy a ticket. But wouldn’t it be kinda funny if it ended up surpassing the $93.8 million debut of 2017’s Justice League?
So yeah, it looks like Joker is destined to be a box office hit, and the conversation surrounding the film will undoubtedly last for weeks—not to mention the serious Oscar prospects of Phoenix and the film as a whole. Buckle up, folks. It’s gonna be a hot-take-filled ride.
For more on Joker, check out our most recent articles below:
- Joaquin Phoenix & Todd Phillips on ‘Joker’, Creating the Laugh, Why It’s Set in the 80s, and More
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- Oscar Beat: TIFF Launches Jennifer Lopez, Jamie Foxx, Joaquin Phoenix and More into the Awards Race
- 21 New ‘Joker’ Images Take Us Further into Arthur Fleck’s World