Joker Director Todd Phillips On ‘far left’ criticism “outrage is a commodity”
From the day of its debute at the Venice International Film Festival earlier this month, “Joker,” an R-rated super villain origin story, has drawn both rave reviews and concerns over its realistic portrayal of a character sliding into a psychosis that leads him to kill.
Joker director Todd Phillips blamed the “far left” for some of the criticisms of his film in a new interview. Phillips suggests to The Wrap that outrage addicts are unfairly attacking his Warner Bros. film.
“I think it’s because outrage is a commodity, I think it’s something that has been a commodity for a while,” Phillips said in an interview conducted last week and published Wednesday. “What’s outstanding to me in this discourse in this movie is how easily the far left can sound like the far right when it suits their agenda. It’s really been eye-opening for me.”
Though the film won the top prize in Venice and has been well reviewed before its Oct. 4 release in the United States, it has also stirred fears of gun violence and criticisms that the film glorifies the bloody action at the center of its plot. Some of that uproar has emerged after Phillips originally spoke to the Wrap.
Joker, opening Oct. 4, is arguably the most controversial film of the year even though it hasn’t even opened in theaters yet.
Phillips added “Isn’t it good to have these discussions about these movies, about violence?” “Why is that a bad thing if the movie does lead to a discourse about it? We didn’t make the movie to push buttons. I literally described to Joaquin at one point in those three months as like, ‘Look at this as a way to sneak a real movie in the studio system under the guise of a comic book film.’ It wasn’t, ‘We want to glorify this behavior.’ It was literally like, ‘Let’s make a real movie with a real budget and we’ll call it (expletive) Joker.’ That’s what it was.”
Also see Eight-Minute Standing Ovation For Joker At Venice Film Festival