There’s been a lot said about Todd Phillips’ “Joker” with a big bunch of the talk revolving around the film’s ending and how much of it takes place in the head of Arthur Fleck (Joaquin Phoenix).
Now, another permutation of it has emerged with the reveal of an alternate ending that goes even darker than what the film closed out with. Speaking on his Fatman Beyond podcast (via CinemaBlend), filmmaker Kevin Smith says one ending considered for the film was different.
The theatrical cut ends with Arthur in hospital at Arkham laughing. A social worker interviewing him asks what’s so funny, he tells her you wouldn’t get to the joke. Cut to him in a hallway having seemingly killed her and being chased by orderlies.
The alternate version has Arthur’s answer to the social worker changed to “I was just thinkin’ of something funny” and then flashes back to the death of Thomas and Martha Wayne who don’t die at the hands of a Joker follower in this version. Instead it’s Arthur killing them and young Bruce is screaming and crying. Arthur turns to walk away, turns back, shrugs and shoots the kid. Cut to credits.
Filmmaker Todd Phillips has not confirmed this alternate ending at present and it’s not clear at what point along in production it was rejected. “Joker” arrives on Blu-ray, 4K Ultra HD and digital on January 7th.
Update: Collider’s Steve Weintraub has provided his own update on Twitter saying: “The story about #Joker having a different ending where he killed Bruce Wayne is not real. I reached out to people that would know and am 100% sure this is just someone’s imagination gone wild. Was never shot. Was not in the script.”