‘Batman: The Killing Joke’ Animated Movie Gets Official R Rating

By April 14, 2016
the killing joke featured image

Don’t let the Dark Knight’s name in the title fool you, Batman: The Killing Joke is through and through a Joker story.

The original comic book made waves as not only becoming the only real definitive telling of the villain’s origin story, but also for its dark imagery and deep, psychological torture of Detective Jim Gordon and the story’s brutal treatment of his daughter, Barbara, at the hands of the Clown Prince of Crime. And why? Just to prove that all it takes is one bad day for everyone to go a little mad inside.

Now, the story is about to receive an animated film adaptation, with Mark Hamill doing the voice of The Joker and Kevin Conroy providing the voice for Batman in the film, and it looks like the highly-anticipated DC project has landed its own, risque MPAA rating. Prepare to be excited everyone.

Entertainment Weekly is reporting that the film has officially received an R-rating, due to its faithfulness to the original comic’s twisted darkness. Sam Register, President of Warner Bros. Animation and Warner Digital Series, commented on the rating with the following:

“From the start of production, we encouraged producer Bruce Timm and our team at Warner Bros. Animation to remain faithful to the original story — regardless of the eventual MPAA rating, The Killing Joke is revered by the fans, particularly for its blunt, often-shocking adult themes and situations. We felt it was our responsibility to present our core audience — the comics-loving community — with an animated film that authentically represented the tale they know all too well.”

After hearing about the possibility of an R-rating for the project several months ago, it’s nice to see that DC and the creative team followed through with their plans here. Not even because I desperately want to see Batman receive the rated-R treatment, but because I honestly can’t imagine a PG-13 version being able to accurately capture the inherently twisted darkness living inside of the original Killing Joke story.

Following the release of our first sneak peek look at the film recently as well, it’s looking more and more like this is The Killing Joke animated film that I think fans everywhere were hoping it would be, in case the initial casting of Mark Hamill and Kevin Conroy wasn’t already enough to give you confidence in the project. To say it simply though, this is a very good day for all of you comic book fans out there.

Batman: The Killing Joke is set to premiere at SDCC later this year.

Make sure to keep checking back for more updates — right here on GeekNation.

Alex Welch

Alex Welch

Alex dreams of meeting a girl with a yellow umbrella, and spends too much time* staring at a movie screen. His vocabulary consists mostly of movie quotes and 80s song lyrics. *Debatable