TV & FILM
brian-mcgee - October 24, 2018
One of the most controversial changes to Batman's backstory that's happened on screen came in Tim Burton's 1989 Batman where he revealed that it was a pre-Joker Jack Nicholson that murdered Bruce Wayne's parents. When subsequent directors Christopher Nolan and Zack Snyder got their hands on the character, they remained faithful to the comic book origin where Wayne's parents were murdered by low level goon Joe Chill.
This latest casting news for Todd Phillips' Joker movie starring Joaquin Phoenix as the Clown Prince of Crime indicates that they may be going back to the Burton version of the character's origin. According to ComicBook.com, Dante Pereira-Olson and Douglas Hodge have been cast in the respective roles of young Bruce Wayne and Alfred Pennyworth, meaning that Bruce will still be a pre-teen during the events of the film.
With character actor Brett Cullen appearing as Thomas Wayne, and set photos indicating a personal vendetta by Phoenix's Arthur Fleck against the elder Wayne, things certainly seem to point toward Joker being the trigger man who helps create Batman. This is an obvious departure from Alan Moore's "The Killing Joke," in which Batman creates the Joker, and which was thought to be an influence on Phillips' film.
Of course this is all speculation until we see a trailer or the movie itself—heaven forbid anyone wait that long to confirm things. Also of interest is the fact that young Dante Pereira-Olson recently played the younger version of Phoenix's character in Lynne Ramsey's You Were Never Really Here. Hollywood really is just a small town, y'all.
Joker hits theaters on October 4, 2019.