Joker director Todd Phillips has explained the film’s possible inclusion of a huge Batman twist in a new interview.
The DC Extended Universe film, which stars Joaquin Phoenix in the titular role, arrived in cinemas on October 4.
During the movie, Arthur Fleck’s mother Penny (Frances Conroy) told the iconic character that Bruce Wayne’s dad, Thomas Wayne, was also his real father. Later, Thomas denied these claims and it was revealed that Penny had adopted Arthur and hadn’t been romantically involved with Thomas as first stated.
Despite this, viewers then saw a photograph of a younger Penny with a handwritten message of “Love Your Smile. TW” scrawled on the back. This led fans to believe that Penny was telling the truth after all, meaning Joker and Batman could be half-brothers.
Speaking with Empire Magazine, Todd Phillips said he’d rather leave this big question unanswered as it’s more “fun” that way. “I liked leaving the idea of Arthur being Thomas Wayne’s son ambiguous,” he reasoned.
“Part of the fun is that question being out there. What would that change if Joker is somehow a blood relation to Bruce Wayne?
“Part of the movie is a search for identity. Arthur’s idea is to fit in and belong somewhere.”
Phillips added: “So this idea of Arthur not knowing who his father is, where he came from, if he was adopted, what the story was, was another element in his search for identity.”
Meanwhile, Joker cinematographer Lawrence Sher has solved one of the biggest mysteries that remained around the release of the new film. The mystery revolved around the finale of the film, in which Arthur Fleck finds himself in an asylum.