New York Film Locations

Joker Movie Poster and Trailer

26 September 2019

Next month sees the release of Joker, a psychological thriller film directed by Todd Phillips, who also co-wrote the screenplay with Scott Silver. The film, based on DC Comics characters, stars Joaquin Phoenix as the Joker. Distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures, it is intended to launch DC Black, a series of DC-based standalone films. The film, which acts as an origin story for the Joker, is set in 1981 and follows Arthur Fleck, a failed stand-up comedian who turns to a life of crime and chaos in Gotham City. Robert De Niro, Zazie Beetz, and Frances Conroy appear in supporting roles.

Film Poster: Joker

Phillips conceived Joker in 2016 and wrote the script with Silver throughout 2017. The two were inspired by 1970s character studies and the works of Martin Scorsese (who was initially attached to the project as a producer); the graphic novel Batman: The Killing Joke (1988) served as the basis for the film's premise, but Phillips and Silver otherwise did not look to specific comics for inspiration. Phoenix became attached to the project in February 2018 and was cast that July, while the majority of the cast signed on by August. Principal photography lasted from September to December 2018 and took place in New York City, Jersey City, and Newark. Joker was the first live-action Batman franchise film to receive an R-rating from the Motion Picture Association of America, due to its violent and disturbing content.

Joker premiered at the 76th Venice International Film Festival in August, where it won the Golden Lion, the festival's highest prize. The film has already received positive reviews from critics, with particular praise for Phoenix's performance.

Principal photography commenced in September 2018 in New York City, under the working title Romeo. Shortly after filming began, De Niro, Brett Cullen, Shea Whigham, Glenn Fleshler, Bill Camp, Josh Pais, and Douglas Hodge were announced to have joined the film, with Cullen replacing Baldwin. Bradley Cooper also joined the film as a producer. The director of photography was Lawrence Sher, with whom Phillips had previously collaborated with for his Hangover films. On September 22, a scene depicting a violent protest took place in Brooklyn, although the station was modified to look like Bedford Park Blvd. In late September 2018, filming of robbery scenes took place at the First Central Savings Bank in Astoria, Queens.

Filming in Jersey City started on September 30 and shut down Newark Avenue, while filming in November shut down Kennedy Boulevard. Filming in Newark began on October 13 and lasted until October 16. Shortly before filming in Newark began, SAG-AFTRA received a complaint that extras were locked in subway cars for more than three hours during filming in Brooklyn, a break violation. However, the issue was quickly resolved after a representative visited the set.[63] That month, Dante Pereira-Olson and Douglas Hodge joined the cast. Whigham said towards the end of October the film was in "the middle" of production, adding that it was an "intense" and "incredible" experience. By mid-November, filming had moved back to New York. Filming wrapped on December 3, 2018, with Phillips posting a picture on his Instagram feed later in the month to commemorate the occasion.

A full list of film locations will be posted on otsoNY following the DVD release in 2020.


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