Darren Aronofsky has come forward to claim the upcoming Joker origin movie is the exact same pitch he gave to movie executives over a decade ago.
The acclaimed director, who is currently promoting new thriller Mother! starring his girlfriend Jennifer Lawrence, claims the plot of the forthcoming DC Comics film is one which he previously suggested but didn’t get the green light for.
Todd Phillips has been tapped to direct the standalone feature and co-write alongside Scott Silver, with Martin Scorsese set to produce. The story is rumored to be set in ‘80s Gotham with a vibe similar to Scorsese’s Taxi Driver, released in 1976 and featuring Robert De Niro as a mentally unstable war veteran working on the streets of New York.
“I think we were basically – whatever it is – 15 years too early,” Aronofsky sighed to website First Showing. “Because I hear the way they’re talking about the Joker movie and that’s exactly… that was my pitch. I was like: we’re going to shoot in East Detroit and East New York. We’re not building Gotham. The Batmobile – I wanted to be a Lincoln Continental with two bus engines in it.”
He also pointed out some of his ideas came to life in other films centered on Batman, such as Bruce Wayne’s ‘BW’ ring making the cut in Zack Snyder’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice in 2016.
But he’s surprised his main idea, to inject the vibe of Taxi Driver into a movie based on villain The Joker, was dismissed, and he puts it down to being “ahead of his time”.
“I was always like; why can’t we make a more lower-budget rated-R (movie), just like in comics you have different brands… and now they’re finally doing that,” he shrugged. “They’re doing the spin-offs, which is great. This is an exciting time because they’ll be able to take more risks and we won’t be seeing the same superhero movie over and over again.”