Happy now? Everyone is talking about ‘Joker’

LOS ANGELES (AP) — “Joker” writer-director Todd Phillips says he is disappointed that people are drawing conclusions about his movie before they’ve even seen it.

The film has inspired pieces both in defense of and against the movie, which some have decried as “dangerous” and “irresponsible.”

Phillips says he made the film partly as a response to the world of comic book movies and the celebration of villains like Joker.

“Joker” is a more realistic take on the origins of the Batman villain inspired by films like “Taxi Driver” and “The King of Comedy.” Joaquin Phoenix stars as the mentally ill aspiring stand-up comic Arthur Fleck who eventually becomes Joker.

Phoenix says it’s up to the audience to know the difference between right and wrong.

“Joker” opens nationwide on Friday.

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