Robert De Niro Rumored to Join Joaquin Phoenix in Joker Movie

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Things are getting mighty interesting for the low-budgeted, Joaquin Phoenix Joker movie, which is being directed by Todd Phillips and produced by Martin Scorsese. According to Variety, it looks like Scorsese's old-school, cinematic muse Robert De Niro will join Phoenix in the movie, which is set to start production this fall:

"Robert De Niro is ready to do his first comic book movie. The veteran actor is in negotiations to join Joaquin Phoenix in Warner Bros.’ upcoming Joker stand-alone movie from The Hangover helmer Todd Phillips. Phoenix is portraying the DC Comics villain in a movie that is more moderately budgeted and darker than the studio’s other DC-based movies, known as the DC Cinematic Universe. Phillips is directing from a script he's co-written with Scott Silver (8 Mile, The Fighter). While plot details are largely unknown, the stand-alone is supposed to be set in Gotham City in the early 1980s."

"If a deal is made, De Niro would play a talk show host who is somehow instrumental in the Joker’s origin.

"The Joker stand-alone is being developed as no ordinary comic book movie. The budget is in the $55 million range, significantly lower than most comic book tentpoles that feature characters from Marvel or DC. And the stand-alone is said to be a character exploration as well as a drama, not a fight-fest. The project is due to begin lensing September in New York."