Todd Phillips' Joker has beaten two major DC Extended Universe films on its quest to become the highest-grossing R-rated film ever.
According to Forbes, Joker has so far taken in approximately $652 million worldwide and already passed such other superhero films as Ant-Man and the Wasp ($620 million) and Logan ($619 million). The movie is expected to break $700 million either on Saturday or Sunday. In doing so, Joker will overtake fellow DC films Justice League ($657 million) and Man of Steel ($668 million), as well as New Line Cinema's It ($700 million).
Joker's box office is particularly strong for an R-rated film, and the movie is now among the highest-grossing with the rating. Ahead of it still are 2003's Matrix Reloaded ($742 million), 2016's Deadpool ($783 million) and 2018's Deadpool 2 ($785 million, including the the PG-13 Once Upon a Deadpool). Forbes speculates Joker could earn more than $800 million by the end of its run. If Joker passes this milestone, it would be the first R-rated movie to do so.
After winning the coveted Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival, Joker earned a strong critical score on Rotten Tomatoes. However, that's slipped since release, as the movie has proven quite controversial. As of right now, Joker sits at 68% on Rotten Tomatoes, with an audience score of 89%.
Justice League reportedly lost Warner Bros. up to $100 million due in part to costly reshoots. Justice League currently holds a 40% on Rotten Tomatoes, and there have been frequent calls since the film's release for a version closer to director Zack Snyder's original vision. Snyder left the project during production and was replaced by Avengers director Joss Whedon.
Directed by Todd Phillips, Joker stars Joaquin Phoenix, Robert De Niro, Zazie Beetz, Bill Camp, Frances Conroy, Brett Cullen, Glenn Fleshler, Douglas Hodge, Marc Maron, Josh Pais and Shea Whigham. The film is in theaters now.