Fan projects of all the popular & diverse media franchises are either a hit or miss. In an ocean of fan projects, only a few of them stand out as they’re worth watching- like The Punisher: Dirty Laundry, and Mortal Kombat: Rebirth. Adding to that list is The People’s Joker, a parody of Todd Philips’ Joker.
The parody movie is directed by Vera Drew and made its debut at the Toronto Film Festival this month. However, it has been updated that the unlicensed DC Comics movie will be pulled out of the festival following a rights issue.
What Happened To The People’s Joker?
Just like the plethora of adaptations from the Batman universe, or the DC universe, The People’s Joker is one of the lucky few whose crowdfunding has made its conception a reality. Vera Drew’s parody of Todd Philips‘ Joker has been described as “an illegal queer coming-of-age comic book movie”.
The movie tells the story of an aspiring clown grappling with her gender identity who combats a fascistic caped crusader. The movie will feature Vera Drew in the role of the Joker, with others like Tim Heidecker, Lynn Downey, David Liebe Hart, and so on joining her in this parody of Joker.
On September 13, the movie made its first premiere at the Toronto Film Festival but was subsequently pulled out of the festival. Drew further revealed the details of the abrupt news about the movie in a statement she posted on Twitter-
“The eve of our premiere… a media conglomerate that shall remain nameless sent me an angry letter, pressuring to not screen. Any other film festival would have pulled us immediately, but after being fully transparent with TIFF, we agreed to premiere as planned while scaling back our later screenings to mitigate potential blowback.”
If one visits the TIFF website leading to a page about the movie, it will simply say that the filmmaker withdrew the film due to rights issues. This is saddening news considering that we might never be able to see one of the most exciting queer Batman-adjacent movies in recent times.
It’s Not All Over For The People’s Joker
It was quite disappointing to hear that such a refreshing take on the Batverse was pulled out of the festival, but a fan-made movie can only get so far with all the legal issues revolving around it.
However, fans of Vera Drew’s crowdfunded project, which raised nearly $20,000 two years ago, do not need to worry.
During the very same statement released on Twitter following the removal of The People’s Joker from TIFF, Drew further assured her fans that the movie “will screen again very soon” –
“The People’s Joker will screen again very soon at several other festivals worldwide. We are humbly seeking a distribution partner who believes in what we are doing, will protect us, and will eventually help us make this film accessible to trans people and their families everywhere.”
Finding a distribution partner for a fan project is not an easy task, so I reckon that we won’t be seeing Drew’s movie too soon, but not too late either. As for Drew, we wish her the best of luck in getting the movie up and going again despite the recent legal setback.
The People’s Joker was officially released with its 13th September premiere at the Toronto Film Festival.
Source: Bounding Into Comics