Shot for three months in New York this past Fall and wrapping just after Thanksgiving, the Todd Phillips-directed feature “Joker” starring Joaquin Phoenix as the iconic villain from the Batman DC Comics remains an interesting question mark at the moment.
The film is an original, standalone story as it explores the life of Arthur Fleck (Phoenix) a man disregarded by society. Dubbed both a gritty character study and a broader cautionary tale, it turns out that the vision for it appears to have changed along the way.
Speaking to MTV News (via Collider) this week, the film’s female lead star Zazie Beetz revealed that the script from writers Phillips and Scott Silver was being re-written throughout production, even on the same day as some scenes, and that was in part due to the physical changes Phoenix did for the role which prevented reshoots at a later date:
“The script was great. We rewrote the whole thing while we were shooting it. Literally, we would go into Todd’s trailer and write the scene for the night and then do it. During hair and makeup we’d memorize those lines and then do them and then we’d reshoot that three weeks later. We had to do everything then because Joaquin had lost so much weight that we couldn’t do reshoots later on so we were figuring it out. But Todd’s quick at getting stuff done so we always had extra time.”
Interestingly neither Beetz or anyone else has painted this as a troubled or difficult production, and all indications are the movie was filmed on time, on budget and without any major issues during the shoot. Robert De Niro, Bill Camp, Frances Conroy, Brett Cullen, Glenn Fleshler, Douglas Hodge, Marc Maron, Josh Pais and Shea Whigham co-star in the film which Warners will release in cinemas on October 4th.