U.S. Box Office: 'Joker' smashes October record with $93.5 million debut
"Joker" laughed its way to a new record at the domestic box office. Despite mounting controversy and security concerns, the R-rated comic-book movie scored $93.5 million (76 million pounds) over the weekend and now stands as the biggest October launch of all time. Those ticket sales easily crushed the benchmark previously set last year by Sony's superhero tentpole "Venom" with $80 million. Directed by Todd Phillips and starring Joaquin Phoenix, "Joker" has been the subject of scrutiny in weeks leading up to its release over fears that the disturbing origin story of Batman's infamous foe could inspire violence. However, those anxieties didn't deter moviegoers from turning out en masse to see what all the fuss was about.