Warner Bros. Has Restricted Journalists' Red Carpet Access to 'Joker' Premiere

'Joker'​​​​​​​ will have its U.S. premiere this Saturday at the TCL Chinese Theater in Hollywood, but journalists haven't been invited. 


Image via Getty/David M. Benett


Joker will have its U.S. premiere this Saturday at the TCL Chinese Theater in Hollywood, but journalists haven't been invited. As Variety reports, Warner Bros. Entertainment has decided to restrict access to the red carpet for print and broadcast journalists.

"Our red carpet is comprised of photographers only," the company confirmed. "A lot has been said about Joker, and we just feel it's time for people to see the film."

It hasn't been a great press week for the film, which focuses on the origin story of Batman's most famous adversary. Earlier this week, writer-director Todd Phillips said that it wasn't fair to link Joker to real-world violence. However, the fear of real-life violence in the wake of the film is more closely tied to the titular character's belief that he was wronged by society. In the same interview, he said he was confused as to why the John Wick franchise wasn't met with the same criticism his film has been. 

Phillips later said that those with liberal views "can sound like the far right when it suits their agenda" and added that "outrage is a commodity." These comments arrived shortly after Joaquin Phoenix walked out of an interview after he was asked about the implications of the violence depicted in the film.

As a result of the rising moral panic over the film, the Los Angeles Police Department has vowed to increase cop presence around theaters in the city. "The Los Angeles Police Department is aware of public concerns and the historical significance associated with the premiere of Joker," a statement from the department reads. "While there are no credible threats in the Los Angeles area, the department will maintain high visibility around theaters when it opens."

The statement from the LAPD has come just days after Aurora, Colorado shooting victims family members pleaded with Warner Bros. to join them in gun law reform efforts. "We are calling on you to be a part of the growing chorus of corporate leaders who understand that they have a social responsibility to keep us all safe," the letter read. The Aurora shooting saw 12 killed during a midnight screening of The Dark Knight Rises.

"I think that Aurora is obviously a horrible, horrible situation but even that is not something you blame on the movie," writer-director Todd Phillips said in a recent interview about Joker. "Quite frankly, if you do your own research about Aurora, that gentleman wasn't even going in as Joker. That was misreported. His hair was dyed red. He was having, obviously, a mental breakdown and there's something horrifying about it but it wasn't related to it outside of the fact that it happened at a movie theater." 

Joker hits theaters Oct. 4.

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