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'Joker' director is really annoyed that people are concerned about violence in his movie, but they don't seem to mind it in 'John Wick'
With Joker – the origin story of DC Comics' infamous psychotic clown and killer – just days away from its Oct. 4 release, director Todd Phillips is pushing back over concerns that his film may inspire violence.
His argument basically amounts to: Well, what about all these other violent movies?
"The one that bugs me more is the toxic white male thing when you go, 'Oh, I just saw John Wick 3,'" Phillips told the Associated Press in a recent interview. "He's a white male who kills 300 people and everybody's laughing and hooting and hollering. Why does this movie get held to different standards? It honestly doesn't make sense to me."
The John Wick series, which stars Keanu Reeves, follows a retired hitman on a hyper-stylized killing spree as he sets out to avenge the death of his dog. The John Wick films have previously faced some criticism for the franchise's heavy use of gun violence.
Joker stars Joaquin Phoenix as Arthur Fleck, a mentally ill clown and aspiring comedian who struggles to find his place in the world, but ultimately transforms into a villain by the end of the film.
During the interview, Phillips added that Joker "still takes place in a fictional world. It can have real-world implications, opinions, but it's a fictional character in a fictional world that's been around for 80 years."
The controversy around Joker has been slowly building, but it has boiled over in the last week. After Warner Bros was sent a letter from family members of some of those killed during the 2012 mass shooting at a movie theater in Aurora, Colorado during a screening of The Dark Knight Rises, the studio released a statement that the Joker "does not endorse real-world violence," according to Indie Wire.
The July 20, 2012 shooting left 70 injured and 12 dead, among them two service members and two veterans: Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class John Larimer; Air Force Staff Sgt. Jesse Childress; Rebecca Wingo, an Air Force veteran; and Jonathan Blunk, a Navy veteran.
Landmark Theaters, the largest cinema chain in the states, will be banning the wear of face masks, toy weapons, and costumes during the movie's run in theaters, Fox News reported on Friday.
Additionally, the Army vaguely warned of a potential mass shooting during the film's premiere in a Sept. 23 memo from Fort Sill, Oklahoma, which Task & Purpose previously reported.
Of the claims that James Eagan Holmes, the perpetrator of the 2012 Aurora shooting, was inspired by the DC Comics character, The Joker, Phillips told the Associated Press:
"I mean, I think that Aurora is obviously a horrible, horrible situation but even that is not something you blame on the movie," Phillips said. "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 that but it wasn't related to it outside of the fact that it happened at a movie theater."
Phillips added: "This is not the thing that the movie is trying to represent."
BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Tens of thousands of Iraqis rallied in central Baghdad on Friday calling for the expulsion of U.S. troops, but the protest mostly dissipated after a few hours despite fears of violence following a cleric's call for a "million strong" turnout.
Populist cleric Moqtada al-Sadr convened the march after the U.S. killing of an Iranian general and an Iraqi paramilitary chief in Baghdad this month. His eventual decision to hold it away from a separate anti-government protest camp, and away from the U.S. embassy, looked pivotal in keeping the march peaceful.
STOCKTON — Diane Wright opened the door of an apartment at The Oaks at Inglewood, the assisted care facility in Stockton where she is the executive director. Inside, three people busily went through postal trays crammed with envelopes near a table heaped with handmade gifts, military memorabilia, blankets, quilts, candy and the like.
Operation Valentine has generated a remarkable outpouring of support from around the world for retired United States Marine, Maj. Bill White. Earlier this month, a resident at The Oaks, Tony Walker, posted a request on social media to send Valentine's Day cards to the 104-year-old World War II veteran and recipient of the Purple Heart.
Walker believed Maj. White would enjoy adding the cards to his collection of memorabilia. The response has been greater than anyone ever thought possible.
Editor's Note: This article originally appeared on Radio Free Europe/Radio Free Liberty.
A spokesman for the Taliban has told a Pakistani newspaper that the militant group is hoping to reach an Afghan peace deal with U.S negotiators by the end of January.
The comments by Suhail Shaheen on January 18 to the Dawn newspaper come after negotiators from the Taliban and the United States met for two days of talks in Qatar.
The three Americans killed in a C-130 air tanker crash while fighting Australian bushfires on Thursday were all identified as military veterans, according to a statement released by their employer, Coulson Aviation.
The oldest of the three fallen veterans was Ian H. McBeth, a 44-year-old pilot who served with the Wyoming Air National Guard and was an active member of the Montana Air National Guard. McBeth "spent his entire career flying C-130s and was a qualified Instructor and Evaluator pilot," said Coulson Aviation. He's survived by his wife Bowdie and three children Abigail, Calvin and Ella.
MIAMI/JERUSALEM (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump said on Thursday he will release details of his long-delayed peace plan for the Middle East before Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his election rival Benny Gantz visit the White House next week.
The political aspects of the peace initiative have been closely guarded. Only the economic proposals have been unveiled.