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Willem Dafoe Has An Idea For Joker 2 With Joaquin Phoenix, And Sign Me Up

Willem Dafoe in Spider-Man
(Image credit: Sony Pictures Releasing)

The comic book genre has been dominating the film industry for years now, with studios showing no signs of slowing down. Warner Bros. has been producing projects set both within and outside of the main DCEU, including Todd Phillips’ Oscar winning film Joker. It turns out that Willem Dafoe has an idea for Joker 2 with Joaquin Phoenix, and sign me up.

Joker was a massive hit when it arrived in theaters in 2019, with Joaquin Phoenix winning an Academy Award for his performance as Arthur Fleck. Since then fans have been hoping for a sequel, especially if it is more intimately connected with traditional Batman lore. It turns out that Spider-Man: No Way Home’s Willem Dafoe would like to see that sequel happen, with himself starring alongside Phoenix. Dafoe described his pitch for the project as:

There is something interesting about, like, if there was a Joker imposter. So it would be possible to have not only dueling Jokers but someone that says to be the Joker that isn't the Joker. And that kind of opens up the possibility of an interesting story, particularly if you had Joaquin Phoenix's Joker, and then you had someone who was either imitating or riffing off what he did. I fantasized about that. But other than that I am not talking to anybody [about it], you're the first one.

Well, that sounds like a pretty awesome idea. It would no doubt be thrilling to see Joaquin Phoenix and Willem Dafoe on the big screen together, especially if they end up being dueling versions of the Batman villain in Joker 2. Of course, it’s unclear if Warner Bros. currently has any plans to move forward with this type of sequel.

Willem Dafoe's comments to GQ are sure to turn a few heads. Given the pedigree of both Dafoe and Jaoquin Phoenix as performers, they seem like a dream combination to bring Joker 2 to life. Phoenix gave an outstanding performance as Arthur Fleck, and there are few actors who could match his energy. But Dafoe is just that type of performer, as he’s known for always going 100 percent, as seen in his return as Green Goblin in Spider-Man: No Way Home

Todd Phillips and company crafted an original story with the first Joker movie, providing a new origin story for Joaquin Phoenix’s title character. While most of the runtime followed as Arthur Fleck slowly lost his sanity and became disenfranchised by Gotham City, the third act featured a few connections to Batman, incorporating Bruce Wayne’s dark backstory. It sounds like Willem Dafoe wants to get in on the action, and tell another story that’s unique from the comic source material.

While both Joaquin Phoenix and Todd Phillips originally expressed some interest in continuing their collaboration with a Joker sequel, there hasn’t been any updates from them or Warner Bros. As such, it’s more than possible that we’ll never see Joker 2 come to life. That is, unless Willem Dafoe’s elevator pitch was able to convince execs at the studio.

The next DC movie hitting theaters is The Batman on March 4th. In the meantime, check out the 2022 movie release dates to plan your next movie experience. 

Corey Chichizola
Corey Chichizola

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his famous actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.