After months of endless internet discussion about its potential societal impact, the legacy of Joker has finally settled into place, as it has become the first R-Rated movie to gross $1 billion at the worldwide box office in the history of — as Martin Scorsese likes to put it — cinema.
Based on the iconic Clown Prince of Crime, Joker — which was directed by Todd Phillips (The Hangover) and starred Joaquin Phoenix (Walk The Line) in the titular role — is set to officially cross the $1 billion mark in global ticket sales on Friday, making it the first-ever R-Rated film to reach that lofty milestone.
Trailing Joker is The Matrix Reloaded, which made about $828 million worldwide, followed by Deadpool and its sequel, which each made about $785 million worldwide.
As for what this box-office record means for the future of the film industry, frankly, it’s massive. Not only will we start seeing more R-Rated “adult” comic book movies but we very well may see a renewed focus on prestige adult dramas in general (fingers crossed that Knives Out and Ford v Ferrari perform well).
Joker isn’t done breaking records quite yet, as the film is essentially a shoo-in to rack up various award nominations in the coming months, including at the Academy Awards. With Joaquin Phoenix shaping up as the current favorite for Best Actor, Joker has the best chance of any comic book film ever made to take home the prize for Best Picture or Best Actor. And if that happens… the established order will have been upset and everything will become… chaos.
Eric is a New York City-based writer who still isn’t quite sure how he’s allowed to have this much fun for a living and will tell anyone who listens that Gotham City is canonically in New Jersey. Contact him on Twitter @eric_ital or via email email@example.com