TV and Movies·Posted on Oct 4, 201917 "Joker" Behind-The-Scenes Facts That Are Fascinating And ImpressiveComposer Hildur Guðnadóttir also did the music for HBO's Chernobyl!by Crystal RoBuzzFeed StaffFacebookPinterestTwitterMailLink 🤡 Warning: mild spoilers ahead. 🤡 1. For Joker, Joaquin Phoenix went on an extreme diet and lost 52 pounds. Warner Bros. According to Vanity Fair, he worked with the same doctor who helped him lose weight for The Master, and after filming gained back 25. 2. And the role of Arthur Fleck was conceived with Phoenix in mind. View this photo on Instagram instagram.com He was given the script in late 2017 and Phoenix even had his mother examine the script before deciding to sign on. 3. However, Phoenix said that he did not refer to any past iterations of the character when developing his role. Warner Bros., ABC He explained at the Venice Film Festival press conference, "It was just something that felt like our creation, and that's what was really important for me." 4. When preparing for the role, Phoenix studied the movements of iconic silent film stars like Buster Keaton and Ray Bolger. MGM, Warner Bros. He also took inspiration from the scarecrow in The Wizard of Oz. 5. It's pretty blatant, but a lot of late '70s and early '80s "character study" films served as major influences on the film and you can see many visual similarities. Jamie Righetti @JamieRighetti THE JOKER X TAXI DRIVER 02:08 PM - 03 Apr 2019 Reply Retweet Favorite Phillips referred to films like Taxi Driver, The King of Comedy, Serpico, Raging Bull, and One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest at the Venice Film Festival as particular influences. 6. The film's storyline, following a failed stand-up comedian, came from the famous Batman: The Killing Joke graphic novel. DC Comics The Killing Joke is often considered to be the definitive Batman vs. Joker story and one of the most popular graphic novels ever. 7. And the silent film The Man Who Laughs was also another major influence on the movie. Tap to play GIF Tap to play GIF Universal Pictures Co-writer Scott Silver referenced the 1928 film a lot early on in the process. 8. Arthur's clown makeup was purposefully made to look "antique" — his lips were made a reddish-brown to resemble blood. View this photo on Instagram instagram.com According to makeup head Nicki Ledermann, "Even his slanted smile is a metaphor that everything is not perfect. Maybe it’s funny — maybe it’s not." 9. The script often changed on the day, before shooting, and the actors would have to adapt — which they did really well — and even improvise their characters' dialogue. Warner Bros. According to director Todd Phillips, Zazie Beets' character Sophie got the most "messed" with between writing and actually shooting. He complimented Beets saying she was amazing and "so down for that kind of improvisation, it never phased her, she was enthusiastic about the changes, she helped with dialogue for her character, it was a beautiful collaboration." 10. Before filming, Phillips told Phoenix that he envisioned Joker's laughter as something that's almost painful. Warner Bros. Phoenix would practice many different kinds of laughs and "audition" them for Phillips at his own request. 11. There are at least three different laughs the Joker does: the "affliction" laugh, the "one of the guys" laugh, and then the "authentic joy" laugh at the end. Warner Bros. Creepy AF. 12. Although Robert DeNiro is Phoenix's favorite American actor, the two hardly talked on set. Warner Bros. Part of this was due to their similar acting methods. 13. In fact, there was a little awkward tension between the two because DeNiro insisted the cast do a read-through before filming his scenes, while Phoenix did not want to do any read-throughs. View this photo on Instagram instagram.com Despite their opposite positions, they finally came to an agreement and worked it all out. 14. Phillips actually asked composer Hildur Guðnadóttir to start writing music off the script, which is not normally done in movies. Jc Olivera / WireImage Fun fact: Guðnadóttir also did the music for HBO's Chernobyl! 15. And Guðnadóttir's music was often played on set to help set the mood. View this photo on Instagram instagram.com Beets said her music was a nice "tonal motivation for what you were doing." 16. In fact, her music basically changed the bathroom dancing scene from how it was written in the script. Tap to play GIF Tap to play GIF Warner Bros. In the script, Arthur simply runs into the bathroom, hides the gun, and washes his face. Phillips played Guðnadóttir's music while they were shooting and Phoenix just started doing the dancing movements and they kept it. 17. Although many past actors went to dark places IRL to play the role of the Joker, Phoenix says he didn't have that experience. Warner Bros. "I didn't struggle, it was enjoyable, it was fulfilling," he said.