Last week, Warner Bros. gave fans a new look at the highly-anticipated DC Universe Original Movie Batman: The Killing Joke, which is the first DC animated movie to be Rated R. Anticipation for this adaptation of Alan Moore's iconic graphic novel has been growing ever since. But the studio hadn't announced a release date until today. We have a new photo of The Joker, voiced by Mark Hamill, the Blu-ray artwork, and word that this superhero adventure will hit Blu-ray August 2.
Entertainment Weekly has unveiled this new photo of The Joker, along with details about the bonus features that will be included on the Blu-ray and Digital HD (which debuts a few weeks earlier on July 23). The deluxe edition will include bonus episodes of The New Batman Adventures and Batman: The Animated Series, along with two featurettes, Madness Set to Music and Many Shades of the Joker: The Tale of the Killing Joke. Madness Set to Music is a documentary which chronicles the creation of the film's storyboards and original score, while Many Shades of the Joker: The Tale of the Killing Joke is a making-of short that delves into the style of the original graphic novel. Fans who purchase the Blu-ray combo pack will also get a limited edition figurine of The Joker.
The Killing Joke is a beloved graphic novel written by Alan Moore and drawn by Brian Bolland, which was published in 1988. The plot offers one of the few origin stories for The Joker, where he has a theory that one bad day can drive any man insane, which he tests on James Gordon. The story also features Barbara Gordon becoming paralyzed, for a period of time, leading to her retiring as Batgirl. We also reported last month that this movie will make one big change from the original graphic novel.
Executive producer Bruce W. Timm revealed at Comic Con that the movie will include, "an original 15-minute prologue that helps set up the story, giving even longtime fans something new to look forward to." Our report from last month revealed that the prologue will center entirely on Barbara Gordon, voiced by Tara Strong, who is actually seen in her Batgirl suit, which never happens in the comics. This 15-minute prologue will offer new insight into her story, before she is brutally tortured by The Joker, one of the graphic novel's most iconic and controversaly moments.
The voice cast also includes Ray Wise as Commissioner Gordon, although no other characters have been confirmed quite yet. Sam Liu (Justice League vs. Teen Titans) is directing from a script by Eisner Award-winning comic book writer Brian Azzarello (100 Bullets, Wonder Woman), based on the graphic novel. Take a look at this new photo of The Joker and the Blu-ray artwork from Batman: The Killing Joke below, and stay tuned for more footage and artwork from this animated superhero adaptation.