Last year the Toronto International Film Festival played host to The People’s Joker, a queer, comedic re-imagining of Batman’s legendary foil in a Gotham City where crime was outlawed. Warner Bros, naturally, immediately did not care for this, and the film looked like it was destined for a life of limited showings at festivals, if even that. But in 2024 it will find new life.
Altered Innocence has announced that it has secured the distribution rights for Vera Drew’s dark comedy—in which she also stars as Joker the Harlequin—with a release set to begin in New York City April 5, 2024.
“I am absolutely thrilled and humbled that Altered Innocence is helping me bring The People’s Joker to theaters this spring,” Drew said in a press release. “This movie started as a DIY community project for queer artists and I made it with my friends to process what it was like coming out as a trans woman working in the film and TV industry. It has been a long road freeing The People’s Joker and finding a release plan that rings true to the queer, anarchist spirit we had while making it. What better home than among Altered Innocence’s catalog of gorgeously gay and deliciously edgy films.”
The People’s Joker made its debut at the 2022 TIFF; it vanished from schedules after its first screening as Warner Bros. took on the parodical view of one of its most famous DC comics characters, as well as its loose riff on the 2019 Todd Philips movie The Joker. Although it made occasional rare appearances on the festival circuit this year, including at Outfest LA and Fantastic Fest, this marks the first in what will hopefully be, at least in some ways, a more accessible theatrical run.
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