It's not an exaggeration to say that The Joker is arguably DC Comics' most well-known super villain, if not the most famous super villain in all of comic book history. For nearly eight decades, the Clown Prince of Crime has antagonized Batman and his allies, both on the printed page and may other media projects. The character was most recently played in live action by Jared Leto in 2016's Suicide Squad, and while there were already plans to bring him back for more DC Extended Universe movies, word has come in that this version of The Joker will be getting a movie of his own.
According to Variety, Jared Leto is expected to star and executive produce a Joker movie that's intended to expand on the world that Suicide Squad established. Leto was already reportedly being brought back for Suicide Squad 2, Gotham City Sirens and a movie centered on Joker and Harley's relationship, but this new movie provides yet another way for Leto to reprise his version of the character. It's unclear when production will begin, as the search for a writer is currently underway, as well as if it will be filmed before or after Suicide Squad 2.
If this sounds a little familiar to you, it's because last summer it was reported that a standalone Joker movie was in the works, except instead of taking place within the DCEU, it would be separate from that franchise. The Hangover's Todd Phillips is directing and co-writing the script with Scott Silver, and Joaquin Phoenix has reportedly been in negotiations to play this version of the Clown Prince of Crime. But Jared Leto's Joker was already expected to return, and now yet another movie is lined up for him. While I doubt that all of the projects said to feature Leto's Joker will move forward, this new report makes it sound like Leto's Joker movie is more of a priority. Then again, nothing is certain until cameras start rolling, and even then there can be crazy developments.
The Joker's role in Suicide Squad was minor at best. Along with being used to flesh out Harley Quinn's backstory, he also worked to free her from Amanda Waller's control. Joker's rescue plan didn't work out the way he intended, but at the end of Suicide Squad, he broke into Belle Reve and freed her from custody. Harley will next appear in Birds of Prey, although there's no word yet on if Joker will appear in that movie. Then, of course, there's The Batman, although working off the little information that's come out about that movie, it doesn't sound like Ben Affleck's Caped Crusader will directly clash with Leto's Clown Prince of Crime.
Stay tuned to CinemaBlend for all the latest on Joker's movie appearances and the DCEU as a whole. If you're interested in what other projects this franchise has in development, look through our DC movies guide.