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‘Joker’ Just Became the First R-Rated Film to Earn $1 Billion

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Joaquin Phoenix’s Joke grinning in mirror

As of yesterday, Joker is the first R-rated film to earn over $1 billion at the box office, Variety reports. This is a particularly impressive feat when you consider that the film didn’t even get a Chinese release.

Todd Phillips’ alternate origin story for the iconic Batman villain has far exceeded its projected box office performance, given its modest $62.5 million budget.

“It’s already in territory that nobody thought it would get to. It’s achieved a box office that is above the wildest expectations of the studio and analysts,” Comscore’s senior media analyst, told the Associated Press. Speaking back in mid-October he claimed that “even if the box office stopped right now it’s an absolute, unqualified success.”

Its a win for Warner Bros., The studio had some success with IT Chapter Two, earlier this year. However, Joker has provided a much-needed boost after The Goldfinch, The Kitchen, Blinded by the Light and Motherless Brooklyn each underperformed at the box office.

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