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Joker director Todd Phillips calls debate over Joaquin Phoenix starrer causing violent acts 'bulls***t thing'

A few days before Joker hit the cinemas, the controversy around the movie possibly inspiring violent actions became a cause of concern among moviegoers. Joker director Todd Phillips looks back at the controversy now.
Joker director Todd Phillips calls debate over Joaquin Phoenix starrer causing violent acts 'bulls***t thing'Joker director Todd Phillips calls debate over Joaquin Phoenix starrer causing violent acts 'bulls***t thing'
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Ahead of Joker's release in October, Todd Phillips found himself in the middle of a controversy. Questions about the aftermath of the movie were being raised. Many pointed out that the film could inspire violent actions. The concerns also caused due to the unfortunate Aurora theater shooting, where moviegoers tragically died during a screening of The Dark Knight Rises in 2012. At the time of Joker's release, Warner Bros issued a statement addressing the controversy. Now, director Phillips looked back at the controversy and deemed it a "bulls**t thing." 

The filmmaker addressed the controversy during The Hollywood Reporter's Director Roundtable. Not only did he call it "bulls***t," g he also went ahead and blame the media for the controversy. "No, because I just didn't subscribe to that bulls***t thing, quite frankly, that was happening in the media, where they just pick a movie every so often and declare it means something it doesn't," Phillips said. "We had think pieces being written where people proudly wrote, 'I haven't seen the movie. I don't need to see the movie,'" he added.

At the time, Warner Bros assured moviegoers that Joker is a fictional character and the makers do not intend to make the character a hero. "Gun violence in our society is a critical issue, and we extend our deepest sympathy to all victims and families impacted by these tragedies. Our company has a long history of donating to victims of violence, including Aurora, and in recent weeks, our parent company joined other business leaders to call on policymakers to enact bi-partisan legislation to address this epidemic," the statement read. 

"At the same time, Warner Bros. believes that one of the functions of storytelling is to provoke difficult conversations around complex issues. Make no mistake: neither the fictional character Joker, nor the film, is an endorsement of real-world violence of any kind. It is not the intention of the film, the filmmakers or the studio to hold this character up as a hero," the statement added. Joker went on the become the highest-grossing R-Rated movie of all-time. Stay tuned to Pinkvilla for more updates. 

ALSO READ: Joker: Joaquin Phoenix starrer hits the 1 billion dollar mark at worldwide box office

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