Joaquin Phoenix Left 'Joker' Co-Stars Baffled by Walking Off Set Mid-Difficult Filming
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Director Todd Phillips admits that there were times when the leading man 'lost his composure on the set,' while co-star Robert De Niro defends him for having to be intense for the film.

AceShowbiz - "Joker" star Joaquin Phoenix found some of the film's darkest scenes so difficult he'd just walk off set and leave everyone hanging.

The actor has been earning rave reviews and early Oscar buzz for his performance as the Batman villain, and the film's writer and director Todd Phillips reveals playing the comic book menace didn't come easy for his leading man.

Phillips tells the New York Times, Phoenix "lost his composure on the set, sometimes to the bafflement of his co-stars."

He adds, "In the middle of the scene, he'll just walk away and walk out, and the poor other actor thinks it's them and it was never them. It was always him, and he just wasn't feeling it..."

One co-star who appreciated what Joaquin was going through was Robert De Niro, who adds, "He was very intense in what he was doing, as it should be, as he should be."

The DC Comics character has previously been played on the big screen by the late Heath Ledger, Jared Leto and Jack Nicholson.

"Joker", which was named Best Film at the Venice Film Festival in Italy at the weekend (September 07), hits theatres on 4 October.

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