Russell Simmons accused of rape by publisher's granddaughter

(Genaro Molina / Los Angeles Times)

Official details about the forthcoming origin film about the Joker, the comic-book villain, are finally here: Joaquin Phoenix will star in the Warner Bros. project, with “The Hangover’s” Todd Phillips directing.

The movie, which begins production later this year, centers around Batman’s arch nemesis and is billed as “an original, standalone story not seen before on the big screen,” according to a Monday statement from Warner Bros.

“Phillips’ exploration of a man disregarded by society is not only a gritty character study, but also a broader cautionary tale,” the statement read.