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Jared Leto on why he wanted to do something different with the Joker

03.31.2016

Suicide Squad Joker Jared Leto

Each cinematic incarnation of the Joker has been special and unique, with each actor filling the clown prince of crime's shoes in delightful and horrifying ways. With the release of David Ayer's SUICIDE SQUAD on the horizon, we're almost due for a fresh take on the Joker courtesy of Jared Leto. Fan reaction to Leto's Joker has been fairly mixed so far, but personally I'm very excited by the potential for the actor to bring something different to the role, which is exactly what Leto knew he wanted to do from day one. Leto spoke with Entertainment Weekly recently and commented on what special thing it was to be asked to take on the responsibility of playing this character that so many wonderful actors have played before him, but that he knew he had to make the role his own.

You just knew you had to do something different. You had to make it your own. That happens all the time. Whether you’re a composer working on a piece of music that was written a century ago, or you’re an actor on stage, reinterpreting a play, it’s very common these days. Directors take on great works of cinema, actors reinterpret roles, that’s been going on for a great deal of time. From Scarface to Hamlet. In some ways it’s really interesting to reinterpret, redefine. It's a weighty thing to do. But it’s exciting. The Joker is one of those roles. He was written brilliantly when he was first shared with the world 75 years ago, or something crazy like that. And I think I’m just really grateful I had the opportunity.

I'll always remember the outrage that followed once glimpses of Heath Ledger's Joker from THE DARK KNIGHT emerged, which is something Leto's Joker also has in common, but I remain hopeful that once SUICIDE SQUAD is released, we'll have another fascinating take on the character to enjoy. Speaking of SUICIDE SQUAD, there have been rumours that the film is currently undergoing some pricey reshoots in order to lighten up the tone of the film and beef up the character interactions.

SUICIDE SQUAD will open on August 5, 2016.

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Source: EW

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8:00PM on 04/01/2016
No one would have been as angry if it wasn't for the ghetto scratch Tattoos he's covered in. And I'm a guy covered in tattoos.
No one would have been as angry if it wasn't for the ghetto scratch Tattoos he's covered in. And I'm a guy covered in tattoos.
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10:43AM on 04/01/2016

This movie looks damn good, but...

My issue with this Joker is that he is already dated with that Ed Hardy look. Ledger's Joker had a timeless look to him, a look that will still be creepy 20 years from now. 20 years from now people will be laughing at this overly self-aware dated pop culture look.
My issue with this Joker is that he is already dated with that Ed Hardy look. Ledger's Joker had a timeless look to him, a look that will still be creepy 20 years from now. 20 years from now people will be laughing at this overly self-aware dated pop culture look.
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9:53AM on 04/01/2016

We'll see..

It seems to soon to introduce a new Joker. I'm not a fan of Ayer's work although based on Fury, he does like to write for crazy characters so maybe this will work.

I do like the self awareness that he has to do something different than the others.

Margot Robbie is going to steal the show without a doubt.
It seems to soon to introduce a new Joker. I'm not a fan of Ayer's work although based on Fury, he does like to write for crazy characters so maybe this will work.

I do like the self awareness that he has to do something different than the others.

Margot Robbie is going to steal the show without a doubt.
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7:26AM on 04/01/2016
It's not the fact it's a different take on The Joker. It the fact that it's The Joker AGAIN...

Sure, it isn't as bad as the Spider-Man movies and their different incarnations of The Green Goblin, but it's dangerously close of becoming that.

There are at least a dozen new to the big screen villains that Batman and the Suicide Squad could be facing before we need ANOTHER version of The Joker.

Let the big guy rest for a while. Makes it more exciting when he eventually does come back.
It's not the fact it's a different take on The Joker. It the fact that it's The Joker AGAIN...

Sure, it isn't as bad as the Spider-Man movies and their different incarnations of The Green Goblin, but it's dangerously close of becoming that.

There are at least a dozen new to the big screen villains that Batman and the Suicide Squad could be facing before we need ANOTHER version of The Joker.

Let the big guy rest for a while. Makes it more exciting when he eventually does come back.
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9:09AM on 04/01/2016
i would agree that sometimes characters get diluted and the magic can get lost when you have another version of every so many years. i'm no longer pumped about another terminator and who will be john connor, or another die hard, ect. Some roles have been fortunate enough to not have lost that magic. Bond and the Joker have not in my opinion. i will say the first flop could be disastrous for the role.......one bad version of it and then 5 years later they try again then i will start getting
i would agree that sometimes characters get diluted and the magic can get lost when you have another version of every so many years. i'm no longer pumped about another terminator and who will be john connor, or another die hard, ect. Some roles have been fortunate enough to not have lost that magic. Bond and the Joker have not in my opinion. i will say the first flop could be disastrous for the role.......one bad version of it and then 5 years later they try again then i will start getting worried. i think a green goblin comparison is a little harsh but i see where you're coming from.
9:58AM on 04/01/2016
I agree. BUT.. think of it from the studio perspective. Who is a villain that transcends Batman fandom and non comic book/casual fans would know? They needed a familiar villain.

Plus, they are making a movie with characters most casual fans have NEVER heard of. The vilain has to be worse than the heroes in this case.

I'm with you but when they chose to do a Suicide Squad movie, they painted themselves into a corner.
I agree. BUT.. think of it from the studio perspective. Who is a villain that transcends Batman fandom and non comic book/casual fans would know? They needed a familiar villain.

Plus, they are making a movie with characters most casual fans have NEVER heard of. The vilain has to be worse than the heroes in this case.

I'm with you but when they chose to do a Suicide Squad movie, they painted themselves into a corner.
11:00AM on 04/01/2016
You can't have Batman without Joker
You can't have Batman without Joker
12:01AM on 04/01/2016

Anyone else notice the images of Heath Ledger & Jack Nicholson in the article pic?

It's a good idea that Leto's doing his own thing w/ the Joker. The character is memorialized by his psychopathic crazyness...but that can be interpreted in so many different ways w/ a talented actor behind it.
It's a good idea that Leto's doing his own thing w/ the Joker. The character is memorialized by his psychopathic crazyness...but that can be interpreted in so many different ways w/ a talented actor behind it.
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10:00PM on 03/31/2016
I think he will be great in the role, it's the rest of the cast/film I'm worried about.
I think he will be great in the role, it's the rest of the cast/film I'm worried about.
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9:52PM on 03/31/2016
I'm actually surprised a lot more fans aren't excited to see another, new interpretation of the Joker. Especially with Leto under the clown makeup this time around and while also in a shared universe as well.

Leto wasn't a name I had even thought of when it came to casting for the iconic role, but I sure am glad he decided to do the Joker instead of Doctor Strange. I'm not expecting him to surpass Nicholson (who is still my favorite) and/or Ledger, but am hoping he is just as great, which
I'm actually surprised a lot more fans aren't excited to see another, new interpretation of the Joker. Especially with Leto under the clown makeup this time around and while also in a shared universe as well.

Leto wasn't a name I had even thought of when it came to casting for the iconic role, but I sure am glad he decided to do the Joker instead of Doctor Strange. I'm not expecting him to surpass Nicholson (who is still my favorite) and/or Ledger, but am hoping he is just as great, which I'm predicting he will due to his very serious method acting and dedication.
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9:31PM on 03/31/2016

I'm stoked

To see his joker hes a highly underated actor.
To see his joker hes a highly underated actor.
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9:37PM on 03/31/2016
How exactly is an Academy Award winner underrated?
How exactly is an Academy Award winner underrated?
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