This ‘Marvel’ Star Convinced Robert De Niro To Join ‘Joker’

by Jeremy Spirogis
Robert De Niro speaks onstage

Robert De Niro could also be finest recognized for his hard-hitting characters in movies similar to Raging Bull and Goodfellas, however over his decades-long profession, he’s performed a variety of components in quite a lot of genres.

One style he by no means actually ventured into till lately, nonetheless, was superhero movies. Now, because of the urging of a superb friend, De Niro can lastly add portraying a comic book ebook character to his ever-growing listing of accomplishments.

Bradley Cooper satisfied Robert De Niro to affix the forged of ‘Joker’

Robert De Niro speaks onstage
Robert De Niro | Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Film Independent

Bradley Cooper could also be a Marvel star, voicing Rocket Raccoon within the Guardians of the Galaxy and Avengers movies, however he took on a really totally different function within the DC universe.

Cooper was a producer on Joker, working alongside director Todd Phillips. Cooper and De Niro have acted in at the very least 4 movies collectively, together with the critically acclaimed Silver Linings Playbook and American Hustle and the 2 share plenty of respect for one another.

De Niro shared:

“I met Todd Phillips and I appreciated him. I assumed ‘this will be an interesting project.’ Bradley was one of many producers and he informed me to do it. He’s actually terrific. What he did with A Star Is Born, the best way he labored on it quietly by himself, put it collectively, discovered the correct actors, the correct individuals . . . When you recognize what you wish to do, that’s an amazing factor, and you recognize it’ll be particular.”

De Niro took Cooper’s recommendation and went on to play discuss present host Murray Franklin in Joker. His character unwittingly will get within the crosshairs of Arthur Fleck, a.ok.a. the Joker, performed by Joaquin Phoenix, when he reveals clips of his get up on his present. The movie was an enormous success and was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Motion Picture of the Year. 

Robert De Niro and Joaquin Phoenix butt heads in throughout manufacturing

When it involves appearing processes, stars will be very particular, and really cussed. De Niro takes a extra old-school method and holds to the custom of doing a desk learn of the total script earlier than filming. Phoenix, however, refuses to do desk reads and thinks, “You should just feel whatever it is that you’re feeling, what you think the character is going through at that moment.”

Director Phillips needed to bridge the hole between these two A-list actors with differing wants: De Niro eager to “hear the whole movie” and Phoenix saying “There’s no fucking way I’m doing a read-through.”

According to Phillips, De Niro put his foot down about Phoenix: “Tell him he’s an actor and he’s got to be there, I like to hear the whole movie, and we’re going to all get in a room and just read it.”

In the top, De Niro’s needs received out and Phoenix did the desk learn, however not with out some emotional misery within the course of. De Niro, ever variety and delicate reportedly kissed Phoenix on the cheek and stated, “It’s going to be okay, bubbeleh.”

Robert De Niro and Joaquin Phoenix barely talked throughout filming

After that, it was fairly clean, although very quiet crusing for the 2 actors. Phoenix informed Vanity Fair, “The first day we said good morning, and beyond that, I don’t know that we talked much.”

The lack of speaking was not due to any lingering dangerous blood, nonetheless. The two simply intuitively knew speaking between takes wouldn’t serve them or their characters.

De Niro stated: “His character and my character, we didn’t need to talk about anything,” in a single interview and in one other added, “There are times where it feels important to interact with the other actors. And you talk in between takes. But it didn’t seem right for this.”

Phoenix had an extra motive for not speaking to De Niro a lot: “I was probably afraid that I would turn into a fan. He’s my all-time favorite actor. So I couldn’t allow myself to think of him as De Niro.”

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