‘Joker: Folie à Deux’ Is a ‘Risky’ Film, Says Cinematographer

“Joker: Folie à Deux” is turning up the dial on the crazy.

Rumored to be set in psychiatric hospital Arkham Asylum, the musical sequel to the controversial Oscar-winning 2019 film will be released in October 2024. However, cinematographer Lawrence Sher is revealing that the film will take audiences by surprise.

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“It’s a pretty risky movie,” Sher told Definition magazine (via Games Radar), “and it’s going to be surprising for people. I’m so excited for everyone to see it.”

Sher added that the film is “currently in the final stages of post-production.”

“Joker: Folie à Deux” stars Joaquin Phoenix as the eponymous antihero, Arthur Fleck. Lady Gaga is taking on the role of Harley Quinn opposite Phoenix’s Joker as love interest (and equally unhinged counterpart). Per Harley Quinn’s first appearance in “Batman: The Animated Series,” the character is a psychiatrist at Arkham Asylum who treats Arthur AKA the Joker, who in turn radicalizes her and assists her transformation into his codependent lover. The title “Joker: Folie à Deux” uses the French term folie à deux, which means an identical or similar mental disorder affecting two or more individuals, usually the members of a close family.

Sher previously noted that the film is visually inspired by Francis Ford Coppola’s 1981 musical “One from the Heart.”

“I broke that down for the new ‘Joker’ so that it was part of the conversation. Whether those images ended up really influencing the new one, in part maybe they did, they became a conversation starter for me and Mark Friedberg the production designer and [director] Todd [Phillips] as we scouted in those early days,” Sher said in June 2023. “Even if it’s not a reference that you’re going to take on set and say ‘I want it to look like that,’ it’s like brain food. It’s dream food.”

An animated teaser set to Irving Berlin’s “Cheek to Cheek” hinted at the musical components of the feature, no doubt putting Oscar winner Gaga’s voice on display.

Production wrapped in April 2023. The film is directed by Todd Phillips, with actress Zazie Beetz crediting the helmer for spearheading the musical elements.

“Todd [Phillips] has always had a creative approach to the character,” Beetz told The Hollywood Reporter (via ScreenRant). “I love musicals, and I think of them as the characters are feeling and experiencing so much that they can only sing and dance about it, whether in sorrow or in joy. And I can actually see that within myself as well, because singing and dancing is quite a cathartic experience for me.”

For all the details on the “Joker” sequel, click here.

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