Joaquin Phoenix in talks to play the Joker

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What is unexpected, however, is that this is going to be a standalone movie-and potentially a period piece-completely removed from WB's DC Extended Universe (or whatever it's called these days).

The movie would fall under a yet-to-be-announced new banner of DC Comics, which would give the studio the opportunity to expand the canon of the iconic comic-book characters with unique story angles that aren't included in its current cinematic universe. He's one of Mark Hamill's two most famous, beloved, and long-running characters, he's been played by Oscar victor Jack Nicholson, and Heath Ledger posthumously won an Oscar for playing him. Currently, the team is awaiting Warner Bros.' official confirmation before commencing studio negotiation.

He will reprise in the Suicide Squad sequel and the Harley Quinn spinoff. And one that looks poised to star Joaquin Phoenix, one of the most enigmatic but fascinating character actors working today.

While unconfirmed reports a year ago claimed that Leonardo DiCaprio would possibly breathe life to Joker in the DC character's origin movie, the latest rumors claim that the planned movie may have already found the flawless actor to portray the role: Phoenix. He was also in talks for Disney-Marvel's "Doctor Strange", but passed on that as well.

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Legendary filmmaker Martin Scorsese is attached as producer to what has been described as an '80s crime film with a dark and gritty tone.

Todd Phillips (The Hangover, War Dogs) is directing and co-writing the script with Scott Silver (8 Mile, The Fighter).

Phoenix has been the top choice to take on other superhero roles before, but has been resistant to joining any major studio blockbuster.

Phoenix was apparently indecisive about the project at the start. Gus Van Sant's film "He Won't Get Far on Foot", about a man on the road to sobriety after a life-changing accident, was the most recent movie to feature Phoenix.