Warner Bros. has officially started the Oscar campaign for Todd Phillips' Joker. The controversial movie has been praised since its release, with Academy Awards whispers starting before the movie even hit theaters. Joaquin Phoenix and Todd Phillips promised a different take on the comic book movie genre and they delivered something fresh and new, which caught a lot of people off guard, including comic book fans who were unsure about a different origin story for the Clown Prince of Crime.

Most of the controversy surrounding Joker has died down now that people have seen the movie and have a better understanding of what Todd Phillips was trying to accomplish. Now, Warner Bros. is hoping that the movie, which could still hit $1 billion at the box office, will result in some Academy Award nominations and possible wins. And they're not going for just a few of the categories. Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Ensemble Cast, Best Score, Best Supporting Actor, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Supporting Actress, Best Cinematography, Best Production Design, Best Film Editing, Best Costume Design, Best Visual Effects, Best Sound Editing, Best Sound Mixing, and Best Makeup and Hairstyling are the awards that Joker is going after.

The Best Actor award has been the one most frequently talked about since Joker premiered at the 76th Venice International Film Festival on August 31, 2019, where it won the Golden Lion Award. Phoenix even won the TIFF Tribute Actor Award at the Toronto Film Festival a week after the premiere, so the precedent has already been set. Phoenix's performance as Arthur Fleck has been widely praised from both fans and his peers.

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Will Joker end up with any Academy Awards? The studio is certainly hoping so and they are swinging for the fences with their For Your Consideration nominations. While the movie has been praised, there are a lot of critics who found the movie to be severely lacking, which is bound to happen with any movie going for Oscar consideration. About the only thing everybody can really agree on is the performance of Joaquin Phoenix. There's a good chance Phoenix will get the Best Actor nomination, but only time will tell if he actually goes home with the award this time around.

In the last 18 years, Joaquin Phoenix has been nominated for Best Supporting Actor once and Best Actor twice, but he has yet to take home the award. Joker could be the movie that earns him his first Best Actor win, which would be massive for the actor who has turned down more than a few comic book movies in the past few years. Now is the best time for Warner Bros. to start the Academy Awards talk since the movie is still at the top of the box office and still going strong. You can head over to Warner Bros. to see their For Your Consideration page.

Kevin Burwick at Movieweb
Kevin Burwick