Joker 2 trailer gives Lady Gaga’s Harley Quinn the stage

Nearly five years after the release of Joker, the Oscar-winning DC comics-inspired drama starring Joaquin Phoenix, its sequel is finally ready for a spotlight.

Joker 2, officially called Joker: Folie à Deux, will have a few returning faces like Phoenix as the Joker, formerly known as Arthur Fleck, as well as Todd Phillips, who once again directs from his own script. Along with Lady Gaga, the movie also adds the likes of Catherine Keener (Get Out), Ken Leung (Old), and Brendan Gleeson (Banshees of Inisherin) to its cast.

Behind the Scenes of Joker: Folie à Deux

On the CinemaCon stage, Phillips said the intention was to make Joker a one-off, but that by the end of production on the first film, he was talking to Phoenix about doing a follow-up “because it was so fun and we liked the character of Arthur and Joker so much.” In the throes of the pandemic, the two resuscitated the idea “and now we’re here.”

Speculations and Rumors

Rumors dating back to Gaga’s casting have suggested Joker: Folie à Deux was a full-blown musical, but like trailers for recent films like Wonka and Mean Girls, the dance-filled trailer goes hard on eerie whimsy without any trace of actual song-and-dance performance. Phillips may be holding back some cards, as is marketing tradition for modern movie musicals, but at CinemaCon addressed the rumors of how musical-y things would get.

Director’s Insights

“We’ve never really talked about the movie like that [as a musical],” he said. “I like to say it’s a movie where music is an essential element, which to me doesn’t differ that far from the first film. When I first described Arthur I explained him as a weird lonely guy but he has music in him.”

Joker: Folie à Deux is set for release in theaters on Oct. 4.