Todd Phillips Discusses Joker Sequel Rumors Following Golden Globe Nominations

Joaquin Phoenix as Arthur Fleck in Joker

As if it wasn’t already abundantly clear that Joker has been incredibly successful, the Golden Globe nominations came out this morning, and the Clown Prince of Crime’s origin story will compete in four categories in the next ceremony. Now that Joker’s been showered with even more accolades, does this mean there’s a stronger chance that it might get a sequel, which has been talked even before the movie came out.

According to director Todd Phillips, even though Joker is now surrounded by all this awards buzz, a decision still hasn’t been made regarding whether Arthur Fleck’s story will continue, let along any significant discussions. Phillips said:

When I first pitched this movie to Warner Bros., I never thought about nominations or grosses. I was just thinking how we would push this through to achieve a finished product. As for why audiences were drawn to the film, it was a combination of things: obviously Joaquin and his performance, it was so immersive and he really dove into what he was doing. I used to joke with the DP during the shoot that rather than some massive visual effects, Joaquin was that special effect for us. Before we started shooting, I really knew how invested he was in this role and knew we possibly had something very special ahead of us. As for a sequel, it’s way too early [to tell]. I swear I haven’t even talked to Joaquin about that yet or what that would even be.

Todd Phillips was among the Golden Globe nominees Variety talked with following the nominations announcement, with Phillips is competing in the Best Director category. As he laid out in his comment, he knew the movie would be something unique, particularly when it came to Joaquin Phoenix’s performance as Arthur Fleck, but he never attempted to predict how Joker would fare at the box office or if it would even walk away with awards buzz.

Cut to now, two months after Joker’s release, the movie has been a powerhouse in both regards. It’s soared past the $1 billion mark at the box office, and in addition to Todd Phillips’ Best Director nod, Joker will also compete in the Best Picture, Best Actor and Best Original Score categories at the next Golden Globes ceremony. But even with all this success, that doesn’t guarantee that Joker will get a sequel.

Before Joker’s release, the movie was positioned as a standalone, one-off story, and Todd Phillips said that it was not set up to have a sequel, though he and Joaquin Phoenix did toss some ideas around. But following Joker’s standout performance at the box office, the idea of delivering a sequel has been reexamined, and Phoenix seems game to reprise the eponymous role.

Last month, it was reported that a Joker sequel was in development, with Joaquin Phoenix, Todd Phillips and co-writer Scott Silver all expected to return. However, that report was soon debunked, and Phillips later clarified that while he and Phoenix have talked a little bit about a hypothetical Joker 2, no deals had been signed and nothing had been officially cemented. Clearly that hasn’t changed, though that doesn’t mean the idea of moving forward with Joker 2 has been tossed aside either.

Joker’s time in theaters is winding down, but you can watch the movie in the comfort of your own home when it drops on Digital HD December 17, followed by the Blu-ray and DVD copies hitting shelves on January 7. Joker will also be available on HBO Max when the streaming service launches.

Stay tuned to CinemaBlend for any updates on the status of a Joker sequel, but in the meantime, plan your trips to the theater next year with our 2020 release schedule.

Adam Holmes
Senior Content Producer

Connoisseur of Marvel, DC, Star Wars, John Wick, MonsterVerse and Doctor Who lore. He's aware he looks like Harry Potter and Clark Kent.