Bradley Cooper: “Years Ago Todd Phillips Made Me a Drawing with Joaquin Phoenix as Joker”


Maybe not many people know that star Bradley Cooper, historically very close to Todd Phillips’ cinema, is one of the co-producers of Joker, the new DC Films cinecomic starring Joaquin Phoenix.

All three Hollywood personalities comment on the film and their approach to its realization during Joker: Vision vs Fury, one of the many special contents closed within the home-video edition of the film.

” Todd called me and said, ‘I have this crazy idea for this type of alternate version of DC, and the first is the story of Joker ‘s origins,” says Cooper in the featurette. ” I thought, ‘This stuff is so bold. ”

Phoenix adds: “ Todd has a truly unique way of looking at things. And nobody could have made this film for him. 

Joker is a ” wonderful exploration ” of the character, Cooper continues, who years earlier had received a drawing from Phillips depicting Joaquin Phoenix’s Joker on the subway … before Phoenix was ever even contacted for the role. ” Take what is probably the most two-dimensional villain we’ve seen in so many forms – be it comics, a TV series or various films – and say, ‘Okay, what if we try to humanize this person? And let’s see what the possible causes might be, “says Cooper. “And his will to get out of any boundary and tell the story he wants to tell, it is very difficult to put it in a box. I mean, the first thing he did was a documentary about GG Allin. And I think that once you become famous as a comic director, many people surely see you just like that. But I’ve always known he’s an author. 

When explaining his attraction to Joker, Phillips admits, ” I love bad guys. It’s fun to say, ‘Why is it so? What made it so?’ And that’s ultimately the goal of the film. It’s not this gigantic statement about today’s world, and although there are many issues in there, but in reality, everything revolves around one thing: ‘What it takes to transform any person in this way?’ 

For other insights, we refer you to an essay on the analysis of the theme of mimesis in Joker.