As it enters its seventh weekend, Joker has a new domestic total of $316.692 million and a global cume of around $998 million worldwide. So today should be the day that Joker passes the $1 billion mark. The $62.5 million-budgeted DC Films flick crosses the $1 billion mark in raw global grosses. It’ll be, obviously, the first R-rated movie to hit this milestone and the third non-Disney/Universal movie to do so in just under a year. Prior to Warner Bros.’ Aquaman ($1.048 billion in 2018/2019) and Sony’s Spider-Man: Far from Home ($1.031 billion in 2019), no movie not from Disney or Universal had passed the $1 billion milestone since Paramount’s Transformers: Age of Extinction in 2014.

Read more at Forbes.

Joaquin Phoenix will receive the Chairman’s Award at the 2020 Palm Springs International Film Festival for his performance in “Joker.” 

Festival Chairman Harold Matzner called the actor’s portrayal of the film’s title role “another in his arsenal of unforgettable characters.” Phoenix will receive the award at the film festival’s annual Film Awards Gala, taking place at the Palm Springs Convention Center on Jan. 2, 2020.

“Joaquin Phoenix mesmerizes audiences in ‘Joker’ with a performance that elicits empathy and reminds society on the whole that we can be better,” Matzner said in a prepared statement.

The Film Awards Gala kicks off the 12-day festival of events and film screenings happening Jan. 2-13, 2020 in the Coachella Valley.

Read more at desertsun.com

On a late October afternoon, the day before his 45th birthday, Joaquin Phoenix sits in a Los Angeles hotel suite and somewhat sheepishly lights an American Spirit cigarette. Back in August, he had managed to quit smoking for about three weeks, he explains, but then he started up again when he traveled to the Venice Film Festival in September for the world premiere of his new film “Joker.” “It’s awful,” Phoenix says, shaking his head. “I’ve got to stop.”

It’s perhaps understandable that the actor has fallen back on a stress-relieving crutch like smoking given the head-spinning journey he’s found himself on lately. A grim, gritty take on the origin of the comic-book world’s most iconic villain, director Todd Phillips’ “Joker” rode into theaters last month on a wave of headline-grabbing controversy and sharply divided reviews and became an instant smash.

The Warner Bros. film has taken in nearly $1 billion worldwide to date, setting a record for the highest-grossing R-rated movie of all time, and Phoenix’s turn as the troubled would-be-comedian-turned-murderous-evildoer Arthur Fleck has put him at the heart of this year’s lead actor Oscar race.

Plenty of films reap box office riches, but “Joker” has proved to be a bona fide cultural phenomenon. Fans have been making pilgrimages to a stairway in the Bronx to reenact the scene in which Fleck does a high-kicking dance down those steps. Endless think pieces about the movie have exploded across the internet, and viewers have pored over its every detail for clues about what it all means. Phoenix’s Joker suit was, according to one survey, among this year’s most popular Halloween costumes.

All the attention has been a lot for Phoenix to wrap his brain around. This is an actor who has always held fame at an ironic remove, to the point that he made a fake documentary, 2010’s “I’m Still Here,” chronicling his supposed crackup and decision to become a rapper. “I don’t think I expected this movie to be successful,” he says. “I don’t know if I had any expectation. Honestly, Todd and I were just trying to make something that didn’t end our careers.”

Before “Joker” came along, Phoenix had turned down a number of offers to star in comic-book movies. This wasn’t out of some aversion to the genre per se, he insists. (“I’m open to anything — I will consider a live-action version of ‘Road Runner.’ ”) He simply worried about being swallowed up by the sometimes soulless franchise machinery that often goes along with superhero fare.

“I remember, like eight years ago, I was told, ‘Movies are changing. They’re not making the movies that you want to make, so you’ve got to do one of these,’ ” Phoenix says. “It makes sense. It probably is a good strategy. But for me, I guess the fear was that you’d get locked into doing something repeatedly that you don’t really care about, that doesn’t motivate you or excite you.”

But despite Phoenix’s apparent resistance, Phillips was bent from the start on enticing the actor — who has earned three Oscar nominations for his work in 2000’s “Gladiator,” 2005’s “Walk the Line” and 2012’s “The Master” — to bring the Joker to life.

“There’s a little wildness in Joaquin’s eyes,” Phillips says. “I jokingly say he seems like an agent of chaos. He likes blurring the line between what’s real and what’s not. Just based on what I’d seen of him in movies or on TV doing interviews, there was something about that chaotic nature that just felt right.”

Though it took Phoenix four months to finally agree to sign on to the project, he was won over by Phillips’ vision for a grounded character study more akin to Martin Scorsese films like “Taxi Driver” and “Raging Bull” than the typical comic-book movie with its CGI spectacle, capes and quips. “Most movies feel so rigid; every moment is designed,” Phoenix says. “This felt like it was untethered and without a blueprint.”

Read more at LATimes.com

With $304.2 million in North America after five weeks in theaters, Joker’s new global cume is around $953 million. Presuming its 32% domestic/68% overseas split holds, then it will have a new global cume of around $957 million by tonight. That will be 15.3x its $62.5 million production budget, which will make the Todd Phillips-directed and Joaquin Phoenix-starring drama more profitable, in terms of budget versus global gross, than Jim Carrey’s The Mask ($351 million on a $23 million budget in 1994). The most profitable “big” comic book movies are Venom ($854 million on a $90 million budget), Batman ($411 million/$35 million), Deadpool ($783 million/$58 million), Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles ($200 million/$13.5 million), The Mask ($351 million/$23 million) and now Joker ($956 million/$62.5 million).

That means DC Films and Warner Bros.’ Joker is the most profitable comic book movie of all time. In a skewed way, Joker represents every studio’s dream, in that it’s a mid-budget, 2-D title that’s pulling top-tier blockbuster business without relying on China. That it happens to be an R-rated psychological drama is a bonus of sorts, as it’s the third-cheapest $900 million grosser of all time after Bohemian Rhapsody ($905 million on a $52 million budget) and The Lion King ($968 million on a $55 million budget in 1994). When it tops $1 billion worldwide in the next week or so, it’ll be the cheapest movie to do so, with a budget just under the $63 million spent by Jurassic Park back in 1993.  

Up until last December, we hadn’t seen a $1 billion grosser not from Disney or Universal since Paramount’s Transformers: Age of Extinction in 2014. We’ve had two newbies in the last year, both comic book movies with huge boosts in China. But unlike Warner Bros.’ Aquaman ($1.148 billion worldwide with $298 million in China) and Spider-Man: Far from Home ($1.131 billion with $199 million in China), Joker will earn its $1 billion-plus gross without a 3-D boost and without China. When it passes The Dark Knight ($1.004 billion worldwide in 2008), it’ll be the biggest-grossing movie ever to not play in China). Yes, that’s assuming it doesn’t eventually get a Chinese play date. But without China, it should still flirt with a global cume over/under Aladdin ($1.0506 billion).

It’ll have around $312 million domestic by the end of Sunday night, with a domestic cume still likely to end up just over/under Guardians of the Galaxy ($333 million in 2014), Spider-Man: Homecoming ($334 million in 2017), Aquaman ($335 million in 2018) and Spider-Man 3 ($336 million in 2007). It’ll outgross Suicide Squad ($325 million in 2016) and sell more tickets than Man of Steel ($291 million in 2013/$322 million adjusted-for-inflation) by the end. If it passes AquamanJoker will be DC Comics’ fourth-biggest domestic grosser (behind Wonder WomanThe Dark Knight Rises and The Dark Knight) and (presuming a global total between $1.004 billion and $1.081 billion) their third-biggest global cume behind The Dark Knight Rises ($1.081 billion in 2012) and Aquaman.

Read more at Forbes.com

Mark Ruffalo, Todd Haynes, Rooney Mara and Joaquin Phoenix seen at the “Dark Waters” Tastemaker Screening hosted by Rooney Mara and RAD on Wednesday, Nov. 6, 2019, in West Hollywood, Calif. 


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Rain and Summer welcome their brother Joaquin Phoenix to LaunchLeft for this sibling powered episode. They ask questions and offer opinions on Joker as Joaquin graciously shares some great on and off screen moments. The Phoenix’s also reminisce about childhood, making their parents go vegan and their love of music. And finally, Joaquin launches Rain’s new record ‘River’ as they discuss the profound impact their older brother had on them growing up. Close to home. A very special LaunchLeft.

In all of his years of acting, stretching back to when he was 8 years old, Joaquin Phoenix has never done a sequel. And heading into “Joker,” he didn’t expect that to change.

A grim, gritty take on the origin of arguably the comic-book world’s most iconic villain, director Todd Phillips’ film was designed as a standalone story that would exist — in every conceivable way — outside of the DC cinematic universe. That was a major part of the appeal to Phoenix, who had turned down earlier offers to star in comic-book movies out of a concern that he’d find himself sucked into the maw of a commercial machine.

“I guess the fear was that you’d get locked into doing something repeatedly that you don’t really care about, that doesn’t motivate you or excite you,” Phoenix said during an interview for an upcoming cover story in The Envelope. “Part of the whole attraction to me [of ‘Joker’] was there was no expectation. I didn’t sign a deal to do [more movies]. It was a one-off.”

Now that the pre-release controversy has abated and the film has become a box office smash — earning some $850 million worldwide to date and setting a record for the highest-grossing R-rated movie of all time — those gears of commerce are surely turning in the minds of Warner Bros. executives. Still, Phoenix — whose turn as troubled would-be comedian turned murderous supervillain Arthur Fleck has landed him at the heart of this year’s best actor Oscar race — insists he and Phillips would never do a follow-up simply because Hollywood logic demands it.

“I wouldn’t just do a sequel just because the first movie is successful,” he said. “That’s ridiculous.”

That’s not to say Phoenix is completely opposed to a sequel, though. While they were making “Joker,” Phoenix says he and Phillips, previously best known for directing hit comedies like the “Hangover” trilogy, were mulling over the idea of further plumbing Fleck’s complex psyche.

“Long before the release or before we had any idea if it would be successful, we talked about sequels,” Phoenix said. “In the second or third week of shooting, I was like, ‘Todd, can you start working on a sequel? There’s way too much to explore.’ It was kind of in jest — but not really.”

In fact, at one point during filming Phoenix had posters mocked up with the Joker inserted into various old movies as a tongue-in-cheek way of showing Phillips what might be possible.

“I basically said, ‘You could take this character and put him in any movie,’ ” Phoenix said. “So I did a photo shoot with the on-set photographer and we made posters where I Photoshopped Joker into 10 classic movies: ‘Rosemary’s Baby,’ ‘Raging Bull,’ ‘Yentl …’ ” He laughs. “If you see it, you’re like, ‘Yeah, I’d watch that movie.’ ‘Yentl’ with Joker? That would be … amazing!”

Read more at latimes.com

Joaquin Phoenix and Rooney Mara participated yesterday in a protest in Los Angeles for climate change on the planet.

The Animal People, which has been 15 years in the making, looks at how anti-terror laws have been used by the US government to target animal rights activists.

The documentary, which was co-directed by Denis Henry Hennelly and Casey Suchan, premiered at the Austin Film Festival last weekend.

The film, which is described as ‘a chilling portrait of what happens when activism rattles the institutions of power’, covers the Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty organization, which was formed in the UK in the 90s before expanding to the US, where members found themselves under police investigation.

According to the film’s official synopsis: “[It] follows the journey of six young Americans who find themselves targeted as terrorists by the US government for their involvement in a controversial protest campaign. Seeing the future of social movement organizing, the activists used the then fledgling internet to dramatically magnify their impact as they systematically knocked out the pillars of financial support that kept the company in business. But when letter writing and protests began to mushroom into dead-of-night vandalism and worse by unknown activists, this corporation and the government formed an alliance to destroy the group. The FBI began an unprecedented campaign of surveillance in preparation for prosecution.”

Read more at plantbasednews.org

Joaquin Phoenix hosts release party for his sister Rain celebrating her new album “RIVER” at Jim Henson Studios on October 28, 2019 in Hollywood, California.


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Today our favorite actor is turning 45 and we can only wish him all the best, success, health and many years of life for him and us so we can continue to follow his brilliant career.

With $788.1M worldwide, Warner Bros./Village Roadshow/Bron Studio’s Joker has just passed Fox’s Deadpool to become the highest grossing R-rated movie of all-time. That Marvel pic ended its run with $783M. By the end of the weekend, it’s expected that Joker‘s global tally will stand at $825M. At least a $900 final tally is expected with a profit after ancillaries at $464M. (Source: Deadline)

On instagram, director Todd Phillips thanked the cast, crew, and fans:

Wow!! Thanks to my wonderful cast & crew and of course, the fans from around the world— for seeing through all the “noise” and SHOWING UP (some more than once)! We are super proud of the film and all your wonderful messages make it that much more special. #Joker worldwide.