Three-time Oscar nominee Phoenix (“The Master,” “Walk the Line,” “Gladiator”) stars in the titular role alongside Oscar winner Robert De Niro (“Raging Bull,” “The Godfather: Part II”) as Franklin. Director Todd Phillips’ original, standalone origin story “Joker” explores the world of—and according to—Arthur Fleck. Indelibly portrayed by Joaquin Phoenix, Arthur is a man facing the cruelty and outright scorn of society, along with the indifference of a system that allows him to spiral from vulnerability into depravity. A clown-for-hire by day, he strives to be a stand-up comic at night…but finds that the joke always seems to be on him. He’s out of tune with everyone around him, as evidenced by his uncontrollable, inappropriate laughter, which gains momentum as he attempts to contain it, exposing him to further ridicule—and even violence.