If DiCaprio is on board, DC needs to revise its Joker strategy

Maybe we all should have expected this what with Martin Scorsese’s involvement, but Warner Bros. wants Leonardo DiCaprio to star in the standalone Joker film.

Scorsese and DiCaprio have collaborated on five films, including The Departed and The Wolf of Wall Street. While The Hangover’s Todd Phillips is directing The Joker standalone, Scorsese will be one of the executive producers. Although details have been sparse on the plot for the film, rumors are circulating it will be more of a crime film that details Joker’s origin.


Warner Bros. hasn’t been shy in going after big names for its fledgling shared universe with heavy hitters like Will Smith, Ben Affleck, Viola Davis, Jared Leto and Jeremy Irons in the mix. DiCaprio would arguably be the biggest coup, but if he’s on Warner Bros’ radar, maybe they should sweeten the deal and shake things up a bit.

In talking with IGN, Leto seemed bummed out about the final product of his Joker in Suicide Squad.

I think that the Joker… we did a lot of experimentation on the set, we explored a lot. There’s so much that we shot that’s not in the film.

If Leto wants to experiment more with the character, why not let him star in the Scorsese/Phillips project and make the big move of putting DiCaprio in the main universe Joker role? Sure, there’s the problem of swapping out yet another actor to play The Joker, but DiCaprio is hardly any actor. After Jack Nicholson and Heath Ledger, DiCaprio might be one of the few actors who could create another memorable big screen version of The Joker. We’ve already seen DiCaprio in gangster/crime dramas, but a superhero film?

Warner Bros. has already announced a Joker and Harley Quinn film. Why not switch Leto and let DiCaprio recapture his amazing chemistry with his Wolf of Wall Street co-star Margot Robbie?

Credit: Paramount Pictures

DiCaprio has avoided being bogged down in franchises, but DC doesn’t need to get too reliant on Joker as a major player in its shared universe anyway. At best, Warner Bros. could pitch DiCaprio on the Joker and Harley film, maybe a cameo in Suicide Squad 2 and one of Matt Reeves’ Batman trilogy films. That sounds reasonable enough to pitch to DiCaprio. Now it’s just a matter of making a strong enough argument to convince him and to soothe Leto’s hard feelings.

What do you think? Would you want to see Leo come aboard the DC Extended Universe as Joker? And if so, in a flashback film or as a recurring player?

If nothing else, it’d give us another opportunity for an inspired Joker style dance:

Photo Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures