The first images of the Justice League Joker have been revealed, and Jared Leto’s villain has had a makeover since Suicide Squad.
The clown prince of crime will appear in Zack Snyder’s Justice League, in a role reprised by Jared Leto. But he’s changed a little since you last saw him, and it’s much for the better.
The Joker has been an iconic role for many well-regarded actors, including Jack Nicholson, Heath Ledger, and Joaquin Phoenix. But 2016’s Suicide Squad delivered one of the least-loved interpretations; that of Jared Leto, replete with metallic teeth grills and puzzling face tattoos (“damaged” was inked across his forehead, just in case he forgot). The movie flopped, and after Phoenix’s Oscar-winning turn as the criminal clown we thought we’d never see Leto in the role again.
However these new images, which eschew tattoo ink in favour of messy make-up, shows a return to the kind of aesthetic we saw in The Dark Knight. Along with the intriguing pictures, director Zack Snyder explained to Vanity Fair just how the Joker’s appearance fits into the film:
Joker appears in the new film during a sequence set on a ruined Earth after the alien tyrant Darkseid invades and decimates the planet. It’s a dream sequence experienced by Ben Affleck’s Bruce Wayne that reveals what will happen if the superheroes fail to stop the onslaught. Joker is sort of the Ghost of Christmas Yet To Come, supplying motivation through terror.
“The cool thing about the scene is that it’s Joker talking directly to Batman about Batman. It’s Joker analysing Batman about who he is and what he is. That’s the thing I also felt like fans deserved from the DC Universe. That is to say, the Jared Leto Joker and the Ben Affleck Batman, they never really got together. It seemed uncool to me that we would make it all the way through this incarnation of Batman and Joker without seeing them come together.”
We’re certainly looking forward to another face-off between the gothic hero and his sinisterly smiling adversary – especially if it’s when Batman reportedly drops the F-bomb, as Snyder has hinted.
The new version of Justice League is set for release on 18 March 2021.