The new Joker movie starring Joaquin Phoenix is set for a huge opening weekend at the box office. A box office projection reported by Deadline claims the comic book movie is expected to make around $90 million for its opening weekend to set a new record for best October opening in movie history for the United States and Canada.
If it reaches that much money, Joker would surpass the previous domestic October record-holder, Venom, which made $80.2 million over its first weekend. A second tracking service said Joker was lining up to make $82 million over its opening weekend in the Americas. Deadline also reports that it heard earlier in the week, “from those close to Joker,” that the film was tracking towards an opening in the range of $65 million to $80 million.
Joker was produced on a relatively low budget of a reported $55 million (before marketing spend), so given these estimates (which don’t even include any international predictions), it seems like that the movie will be a big success commercially no matter where in the range it lands. That could spell a change for DC movies going forward, as director Todd Phillips spoke at the Toronto International Film Festival that he originally pitched Joker as a movie that exists inside a new label of standalone films. If Joker is a commercial success, you can imagine Warner Bros. looking to make more, though nothing is confirmed at this stage.
“The original idea when I went to Warners was not just about one movie but a label, a side-label to DC where you can do these kind of character study, low-rent, low-budget movies where you get a filmmaker to come in and do some deep dive into a character,” Phillips said.
The director added that Joker, and presumably the other movies that would come out of the new DC side-label, would not connect to the wider DC extended universe. That’s why Phoenix’s Joker is not expected to meet up with Robert Pattinson’s Batman.
Joker’s release on October 3 is still a few weeks off, so box office estimates could change. Keep checking back with GameSpot for the latest.
GameSpot’s Joker review scored the comic book movie a 10/10. “It might make you uncomfortable, and it will no doubt stay with you long after the curtains close; great movies often do,” reviewer Michael Rougeau said.