Over the past few months Jared Leto, and director David Ayer have been teasing Leto’s transformation into that of DC’s most villainous icon, The Joker, with images, and sound clips of Leto showcasing his transformation. And now on the Joker’s 75th anniversary, Ayer took to his Twitter account to give the world it’s first look at Leto’s full transformation into the Clown Prince Of Crime.
Dissecting Leto’s Joker it’s easy to see where the inspirations have come from, and how they play into DC’s burgeoning cinematic universe. While his pale white skin, acid green hair, and blood red lips take us back to the slightly more fantastical Joker that we know from the comic books, before Heath Ledger’s ‘war paint’ inspired realism makeup was brought to the character, the idea of delusion, lunacy and insanity is what seems to be the main focus of the character seen here. Chief among the inspirations (and directly referenced by director Zack Snyder) is undoubtedly Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns, the homage seen here with the Joker’s metal teeth as the result of Batman pummeling him to within an inch of death after he killed Jason Todd. Mister J’s prison tattoos are likely a result of his incarceration, playing on the idea of prisoners adorning themselves with their life story, although it could also go back to ideas seen in more recent comic book runs where the Joker was adorned with tattoo’s i.e. Jim Lee’s work on All Star Batman and Robin. Finally the framing of the image is a direct homage to Alan Moore and Brian Bolland’s The Killing Joke.
With these two inspirations likely lying behind this new cinematic Joker then we’re in for one very crazed, and psychotic performance that should reflect the characters stance as a blood curdling villain, while also playing up to his twisted, maniacal sense of humor. Plus with Leto, Ayer, and Snyder (who’s serving as the Universe’s new creative guardian) all pulling the strings we’ll also be in for some surprises along the way as well.
Leto is set to make his first appearance as The Joker in Suicide Squad, which will open in cinemas on August 5, 2016, but with this early new image, and it’s timely release, maybe we’ll see a Joker cameo flashback in the forthcoming Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice film, or maybe Snyder and Ayer will be saving that for Suicide Squad; but one thing’s for sure the confrontation between the Clown and the Bat is coming!