Warner Bros. has released a teaser trailer for the upcoming supervillain movie Joker.
The film, directed by Todd Phillips, stars Joaquin Phoenix as Arthur Fleck, a clown and comedian from Gotham City who transforms into the menacing, psychopathic Joker and becomes Batman’s arch-nemesis.
The cast also includes Frances Conroy as Fleck’s mother, Zazie Beetz as Fleck’s love interest, Robert De Niro, Brian Tyree Henry as an employee at Arkham State Hospital.
The trailer, scored by Jimmy Durante’s version of Nat King Cole’s iconic song “Smile,” gives viewers a glimpse into the young years of Fleck, as he recalls his mother’s sayings. “My mother always tells me to smile and put a happy face. She told me I had a purpose: to bring joy and laughter to the world,” he says in voiceover. The clip shows him dancing with his mother, helping her wash her hair in the bathtub, dressing as a clown and getting out on the streets, where he is attacked by thugs. Moreover, a taxi also hits him. “Is it just me or is it getting crazy out there?” he’s also heard asking, referring to the decline of Gotham City.
“I used to think that my life was a tragedy. But now I realize it’s a comedy,” Phoenix’s character also says in voiceover.
Joker is slated to open in theaters this fall, on October 4.