If you’ve been paying attention to cinema news for the past few months, you may have noticed that the release of a certain Warner Bros. superhero film is imminent. Suicide Squad hits theaters around the world this week, and in the mixed aftermath of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, DC and Warner Bros. need something special to happen. Having seen a lot of the promotional material and the stellar cast that feature in the film, not to mention the roster of popular favorites that dominate the screen time, it seems fans have nothing to worry about.
Notably, Suicide Squad features the return of the Joker, Batman’s arch-nemesis, but unlike the character’s previous cinematic outings in 1989 and 2008, he won’t be flying solo this time. He’ll be joined by a whole host of Gotham crazies, including on-off girlfriend and occasional punching bag Harley Quinn, man-mutant Killer Croc and deadly assassin Deadshot, to name a few. However, many fans expect this to be the first of many chapters for Jared Leto’s Joker; after all, he is the definitive protagonist to Bruce Wayne’s Batman.
For the first time, an actor might actually play the Joker on the big screen more than once, and where a second outing has simply been speculation until now, Leto himself has stepped forward to share his thoughts on what he wants from the future of the character. DC fans can rejoice, it’s pretty exciting.
In an interview with the Toronto Sun, the Oscar-winning actor was in extremely high spirits while promoting Suicide Squad. When asked about the future of the Joker, Jared Leto revealed that he isn’t quite done with the character just yet.
“I hope it’s an introduction (of the Joker) … and not the end! Because I could easily just play the Joker a couple more times and then retire. Because it’s so fulfilling and so creative and it’s so imaginative. It’s really difficult to think about doing anything else! I think it would be incredible to see Batman and the Joker go head-to-head! This Batman and this Joker. I mean, I don’t know, that might be too much! But that would be fun.”
Where nothing is official yet, this is exciting news for any Batman fan. Ben Affleck has gone on record to confirm that he won’t start making the incoming solo Batman movie until he finds the perfect script — as revealed by Screen Rant in June — and Warner Bros. are keeping their cards close to their chest. Many believe they are waiting to see how Suicide Squad fares at the cinemas, especially after Batman v Superman‘s lackluster performance. Regardless, the fact that Leto has revealed his intentions will certainly get tongues wagging. Let’s not forget that he was spotted in London a few weeks ago, too — a story covered by The Inquisitr — which led to rumors he was attending the set of Justice League. Rumor or research for a future role? One day, we might be able to answer that question.
There’s no doubt that Jared Leto has a passion for playing the character; that much is evident in his portrayal, and although we’ve been restricted to snippets in trailers here and there, it’s clear that he had a blast playing the Joker. Add to that his method acting and his bizarre behavior on set, and you have the possible makings of a career-defining role. The on-screen presence of the Joker has certainly defined careers before — both positively for Jack Nicholson and tragically for Heath Ledger — so many expect this to enhance Leto’s career too. Whether Warner Bros. capitalizes on this enthusiasm remains to be seen.
So, will Leto return as the Joker in Ben Affleck’s solo Batman movie? Multiple rumors for the movie currently hint at a “multiple villain showing” set in Arkham Asylum, so having the Joker appear would make perfect sense, whether it be as ringleader or as part of an ensemble, although this particular scenario has practically been confirmed for Suicide Squad. It is possible that the film will lay the groundwork for the Batman movie — and maybe utilize Justice League beforehand — but whatever happens in the coming months, the solo Batman movie is gathering a decent pace already. Not bad for a project without a confirmed script.
We can only hope that Affleck and writing partner Geoff Johns, the new President of DC Entertainment, construct a screenplay that can live up to the hype. The Joker’s future is uncertain and unpredictable, much like the character himself, but whatever happens in the next twelve months, you can guarantee Jared Leto will keep us posted on his social media accounts. One thing is for certain; it’s going to be an exciting few months for DC fans.
Suicide Squad will be released worldwide on August 5.
[Image via Warner Bros. Pictures]