As if you were somehow unaware The Hangover and Old School director Todd Phillips' standalone Joker origin flick starring Joaquin Phoenix has been snatching up praise and cold hard cash left and right worldwide since it blasted onto the screen back in October. And today you can read the sure-to-be award-winning screenplay by Todd Phillips and Scott Silver.

One of my personal favorite aspects of this Joker script is that Phillips and Silver thought it was a good idea to kick the script off with a disclaimer of sorts. This disclaimer lets each and everyone that reads the piece know just what the screenwriter's intentions were right off the bat. A bold choice, I must say. Their disclaimer reads this.

"This story takes place in its own universe. It has no connection to any of the DC films that have come before it. We see it as a classic Warner Bros. movie. Gritty, intimate and oddly funny, the characters live in the real world and the stakes are personal. Although it is never mentioned in the film, this story takes place in the past. Let's call it 1981. It's a troubled time. The crime rate in Gotham is at record highs. A garbage strike has crippled the city for the past six weeks. And the divide between the "haves" and the "have-nots" is palpable. Dreams are beyond reach, slipping into delusions. TP/SS"

You can go ahead and read the full script right HERE.

The TP/SS tagged at the end of the disclaimer there is (obviously?) the initials of the above-mentioned screenwriters Todd Phillips and Scott Silver if anyone out there was left pondering after reading. Now I don't know about you but I sure hope that Phillips and Silver get at the very least an Oscar nomination for their brave and inventive screenplay. Plus there is a big part of this here film fan that desperately wants to see Phillips finally nominated for his work. After all, like it or not, The Hangover is one of the best comedy screenplays ever written, and if you've never had the pleasure of seeing Phillips' killer documentary on the Murder Junkies lead singer, G.G. Allin - fittingly dubbed Hated: GG Allin and the Murder Junkies, then you are missing out.

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Whether or not Phillips and Silver manage to finally snag an Oscar nomination for their stellar work on the screenplay for this Joker origin motion picture is still up in the air. But that said, I don't think I'm alone in assuming that Phoenix is all-but a shoo-in for a Best Actor nomination. I mean it would have to be a pretty backhanded gesture for the Academy to try and snub Phoenix for his work here as The Clown Prince of Crime. But then again stranger things have happened at the Academy Awards - such as George Lucas' Star Wars losing the statue for Best Picture to writer-director Woody Allen's classic but not as classic as Star Wars romantic comedy Annie Hall co-starring Diane Keaton. The screenplay for Joker comes to us from ScriptSlug.com.

Mike Sprague at Movieweb
Mike Sprague