Warner Bros’ latest foray into the DC Universe, Joker, drew an eight-minute standing ovation when it premiered at the Venice Film Festival on Saturday.
Following the trailer releases, the response at the Venice Film Festival was rightfully anticipated, and according to reports, director Todd Phillips and the stars of the movie, Joaquin Phoenix and Zazie Beetz elicited huge rounds of applause and hoots as they appeared for a press conference.
Majorly due to the response at the festival, there is awards buzz around the movie already, with critics eyeing the Oscar for Phoenix and a flurry of nominations during the awards season. The art director at the Venice Film Festival, Alberto Barbera, stated that Joker is headed “straight to the Oscars.”
Phoenix’s version of the Joker follows the story of a beaten down clown, Arthur Fleck, who is also mentally troubled, which eventually leads to his descent into the maniacal icon that is the Joker. “What was so attractive about this character for me is he’s so hard to define. You don’t really want to define him,” Phoenix said on Saturday at the film’s press conference at the Venice Film Festival.
He also mentioned that he did not refer to any previous portrayals of the Joker for himself; “I didn’t refer to any past iteration of the character, it just felt like something that was our creation in some ways,” said Phoenix.
The movie will be releasing for audiences on October 4th.