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While his directorial debut only premiered a little over three years ago, Ari Aster has already developed a considerable following – and it's one that's well-deserved. The filmmaker first inspired movie-goers' nightmares in 2018 with the stunning horror film Hereditary, and then one year later he entirely evaded the sophomore slump with the spectacular Midsommar. Now he is preparing to make his third feature, and while there's not a whole lot that we know about it, one thing we are very excited to now learn is that he has found a collaborator in Joaquin Phoenix.
Deadline is now reporting that the Joker star has now finalized a deal that will see him headline Disappointment Blvd., the film that Ari Aster is planning as his Midsommar follow-up. A24, which produced both of Aster's previous movies, is set to back this new project as well, but they didn't officially comment on the casting report. It's unclear what genre the film will ultimately fall into, but the trade story says that it will chronicle the life "of one of the most successful entrepreneurs of all time." It's not clear if it will be based on a real person or if it's entirely fictional.
Joaquin Phoenix hasn't been seen in a movie since Todd Phillips' Joker in the back half of 2019, a performance for which he won Best Actor at the Academy Awards, but Disappointment Blvd. won't be his direct follow-up, as he has already completed work on another project. Mike Mills drama C'mon C'mon, which co-stars Gaby Hoffmann and Elaine Kagan completed production more than a year ago, though it doesn't currently have a release date.
As for what else is on the Oscar-winner's plate, he has also signed on to work with Ridley Scott on the upcoming movie Kitbag, which will see him play Napoleon Bonaparte. That project started coming together last October when Phoenix signed on, and last month it was reported that the movie is going to be made as an Apple TV+ exclusive.
Disappointment Blvd. is presumably aiming for a theatrical release right now – and based on some previous comments from Ari Aster it sounds like it will be a real epic. Last June he was quoted saying that his next movie would be four hours long and referred to it as an adults-only "nightmare comedy." He didn't specifically name the project at the time, so it's possible that he was talking about something else back then, but the notion that he's describing this Joaquin Phoenix-led film is exciting.
The new report says that Disappointment Blvd. will likely be the next thing that the Joker star shoots, so hopefully it won't be too long before new information about it starts rolling in.