Batman: The Killing Joke will be DC's first R-rated, animated film

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Apr 15, 2016, 11:33 AM EDT

Ever since Warner Bros. announced plans to turn Alan Moore’s infamous comic Batman: The Killing Joke into an animated film, fans had been wondering exactly how they’d pull off the story’s uncomfortable darkness. Well, now we know.

Entertainment Weekly reports the project will be the studio’s first R-rated animated film. The film tells the story of the Joker’s brutal attack and torture of Barbara Gordon as he tries to drive Commissioner Gordon insane, pushing Batman to his limit. The film will feature Kevin Conroy as Batman and Mark Hamill as The Joker. The comic was first published in 1988 and is arguably one of the most psychologically damaging comics ever published.

“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,” Sam Register, president of Warner Bros. Animation & Warner Digital Series, said in a statement. “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.”

The studio apparently has no plans for a PG-13 cut, which makes sense. If you’re telling this story, this is about the only way to do it. Batman: The Killing Joke is set to premiere at Comic-Con International in San Diego. It will hit Blu-ray, DVD and Digital HD later in the year.

What do you think of the news? Did you expect it to be R-rated?


(Via Entertainment Weekly)