Unknown Facts: Batman's 'Joker'And Actors Who Played It
Category: Movie News

Joker is considered as the most iconic role ever played in movies and the name of Heath Ledger is synonymous with the role. His role earned him a posthumous Oscar, but the unknown fact is that he was offered the role of Batman in Christopher Nolan’s Batman begins before being cast as Joker. Speaking about him, Christopher Nolan said in 2012, “He was quite gracious about it, but he said, ‘I would never take a part in a super hero film’.” Eventually, the role went to Christian Bale, and having observed Nolan’s take on comic book films, Ledger reconsidered and signed on to play Joker in The Dark Knight. “I explained to him what I wanted to do with Batman Begins and I think maybe he felt I achieved it. We cast him even before the script was written. Like a lot of artists, he would sneak up on something. He’d sit with Christian and there would be a line or two where his voice was a little different, throw in a little bit of a laugh. And then we would film hair and makeup tests and try different looks, and in that, he’d start to move, and we’d have these rubber knives and he’d choose what weapon and explore the movement of the character. We weren’t recording sound, so he felt quite able to start talking and showing some of what he was going to do. And in that way he sort of sneaked up on the character.”

Interestingly, actor Joaquin Phoenix, who also won an Oscar for playing the Joker, was considered for the role of Batman as well by director Darren Aronofsky. Aronofsky was slated to make a Batman film in the early 2000’s. But the project fell apart unfortunately and Christopher Nolan rebooted the franchise with Christian Bale. Part of the reason why the film never took off, Aronofsky has said in a new interview, is because he wanted Phoenix for the role and the studio didn’t. He told Empire, “The studio wanted Freddie PrinzeJr and I wanted Joaquin Phoenix. I remember thinking, ‘Uh oh, we’re making two different films here.’ That’s a true story. It was a different time. The Batman I wrote was definitely a way different type of take than they ended up making.”

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