The buzz for the latest addition to the Batman movie mythology has officially begun – and Joaquin Phoenix’s Joker was met with critical praise when it premiered at Venice Film Festival over the weekend.

It’s been deemed as a dark and twisted “masterpiece”, but there were some concerns from fans that director Todd Phillips didn’t follow the comics’ lead at all.

Well, DC boss Jim Lee has spoken out to assure fans of its place within the comic book world.

Warner Bros.

Related: Joaquin Phoenix didn’t refer to any past Joker interpretations

Lee said on Instagram that while Joker may look at the origins of the character through a slightly different lens, it will not betray the source material of the Joker’s story.

“There’s absolutely nothing in this film incongruous with our understanding of who the Joker is,” he wrote. “If anything, Joaquin Phoenix’s mesmerising and unsettling turn as the Joker gives us a deep and fully realised look into one of our favourite villains.

“I’m sure elements will be embraced going forward in our ongoing, ever evolving mythology. That’s what powerful, compelling stories do.”

Related: Joker star lost an outrageous amount of weight to play character

It comes after Phillips declared that the film won’t “follow anything” from the comic books. “We didn’t follow anything from the comic books, which people are gonna be mad about,” he said. “We just wrote our own version of where a guy like Joker might come from.

“That’s what was interesting to me. We’re not even doing Joker, but the story of becoming Joker. It’s about this man.”

Phillips and producer Martin Scorsese’s biopic is set in the ’80s, and portrays the iconic villain as a failed stand-up comic called Arthur Fleck (Phoenix), who turns to a life of crime and chaos after bombing with audiences.

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Joker has a release date of October 4 in the US and UK.


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