The director of the new “Joker” movie has pushed back against criticism over the violent nature of the film.
Todd Phillips defended the film saying it was never their intention to glorify violence through the depiction of the main character in the movie, according to an interview published Wednesday by The Wrap. Phillips described the people critical of the film as looking for a target to pounce on.
— Hollywood Reporter (@THR) September 24, 2019
“I think it’s because outrage is a commodity. I think it’s something that has been a commodity for a while,” Phillips told The Wrap. “What’s outstanding to me in this discourse in this movie is how easily the far left can sound like the far right when it suits their agenda.”
“It’s been really eye-opening for me,” he added. (RELATED: ‘Joker’ Star Joaquin Phoenix Walks Out Of Interview When Asked If Film Will Inspire Violence)
Critics of the “Joker” claim the film glorifies the loner-style people who have been perpetuating the mass murders in the United States. Family members of the victims killed in the Colorado theater shooting in 2012 sent a letter expressing their thoughts on the new film.
“When we learned that Warner Bros. was releasing a movie … that presents the character as a protagonist with a sympathetic origin story, it gave us pause,” the letter read.
Twelve people were killed and dozens were injured in a July 2012 shooting at an Aurora, Colorado, theater during a screening of “The Dark Knight Rises.”https://t.co/dbTIBj33zT
— NBCWashington (@nbcwashington) September 26, 2019
Warner Bros. responded by making a statement regarding gun violence as a major issue, but pointed out that the film is not an “endorsement” of violence.
“… Warner Bros. believes that one of the functions of storytelling is to provoke difficult conversations around complex issues,” the studio said. “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.”