The DC live-action universe is an ever changing place, built upon the success of each film before it. Warner Bros. seems to have found its rhythm as of late, pivoting after the disappointment of Justice League to director-driven origin stories. Ben Affleck ended up departing the role of Batman, with Robert Pattinson recently cast in the same role for Matt Reeves' The Batman. But with Joker so close to theaters, fans have been wondering if the new Joker and Batman might interact in a later DC movie.
The DCEU next few projects might be laid out, but exactly how they all fit into the timeline of the shared universe remains unclear. The Batman has been teased to be following a younger version of Batman, which should presumably exclude Robert Pattinson from crossing over with the likes of Aquaman and Wonder Woman. And Joker was supposed to be disconnected from the greater shared universe. Now director Todd Phillips has addressed this rumor, saying:
No, definitely not.
Well, that's pretty black and white. It looks like Joker will remain a standalone movie, with no chance of Joaquin Phoenix's title character popping up in the DCEU's version of Gotham City.
Todd Phillips' comments to Variety remain consistent from the original plans for Joker. Phillips crafted a psychological drama that isn't connected to the rest of the shared universe. What's more, he doesn't seem to have focused that much on the comics either, creating a new origin story for the Clown Prince of Crime, complete with brand new characters for Joaquin Phoenix's Arthur Fleck to interact with. As such, it doesn't seem logical that Robert Pattinson's Batman would ever cross paths with this new Joker.
This news might not be surprising, but it will no doubt disappoint some of the hardcore DC fans out there. Batman and Joker are a linked pair, as the clown presents Bruce Wayne's biggest nemesis in Gotham City. And since we're getting new versions of the character, it seems only logical that they might cross paths. Unfortunately, we shouldn't hold our breath.
The rumors about Joaquin Phoenix and Robert Pattinson's crossover was seemingly supported by both of their film's time periods. Joker is set in Gotham City in 1981, where Bruce Wayne will be only a young boy. With The Batman focusing on a younger and less experienced Batman than Ben Affleck's version, it seems that their timelines will meet up-- even if Joaquin Phoenix had to play his role a bit older than in the origin story.
Alas, we shouldn't expect this crossover to happen. It's also unclear if Jared Leto is still playing his Joker in the current timeline, which will continue with Birds of Prey in a few months. There are a ton of questions up in the air, so we'll just have to wait and see how it all pans out.
Joker will arrive in theaters on October 4th. In the meantime, check out our 2019 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.