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Joker Cinematographer Reveals What Really Happened To Arthur's Neighbour Sophie

Joker Cinematographer Reveals What Really Happened To Arthur's Neighbour Sophie

After the film blurred the lines between reality and imagination, we're left in the dark about whether or not Sophie was killed

Jess Hardiman

Jess Hardiman


Many people walked out of the new Joker film feeling all kinds of emotions. It was intense, for starters - with some cinemagoers finding things too dark that they had to ditch the flick altogether.

But some of us also left the cinema with a few unanswered questions about what had actually happened in some parts of the movie, which cleverly blurred the lines between reality and imagination.

This includes the fate of Arthur's neighbour, single mum Sophie (Zazie Beetz), who becomes something of a confusing romantic interest for our protagonist.

We see scenes of the two hanging out and enjoying time together, before they eventually go on to become an item. However, we later learn the relationship is merely fabricated in Arthur's mind, meaning we're suddenly in the dark about the nature of their friendship.

Sophie and Arthur in Joker.
Warner Bros Pictures

This means that when Arthur leaves her apartment towards the film's climax, having been discovered lurking ominously on her sofa with an unknown intent, we're not sure if she has been a victim of his increasing violent streak or not - especially when flashing lights appear in the distance, adding to our fears that she may have been killed.

Lawrence Sher, the film's cinematographer, has thankfully been able to shed a little light on the matter, revealing what actually happened to Sophie at the end of the film in an interview with Slash Film.

"We wanted to make the interpretation of the real versus what's not real, a part of the viewer's experience," Sher explained.

"For instance, his relationship to Sophie is a fantasy to him. Some people have asked me, 'Was she killed?' [Director Todd Phillips] makes it clear she wasn't killed.

"Arthur is killing people who've wronged him in a certain way, and Sophie never wronged him. In terms of what we did visually to play with the real and not real, there are callbacks and scenes that mirror each other.

Warner Bros Pictures

"We leave hints using imagery or way we covered scenes similarly between scene.

"Outside of that, I like that people can have the conversation and come to their own conclusions."

Sher also talked about the process that went into the now-iconic steps sequence, which sees Arthur dancing down a flight of stairs, happily embracing his new persona of the Joker.

The cinematographer explained the scene was 'a celebration of him accepting his truest self' - that is to say, his most villainous self.

"It's unlike the slow, deliberate and very meditative camerawork that exists at the beginning of the movie," Sher said.

"For the last scene on the stairs, we used a techno crane, which gave us fluidity to move with him and create energy.

"He dances through the frame, backlit with a hopeful warm sunlight. We are low with the camera and he for perhaps the first time in his life is powerful."

Featured Image Credit: Warner Bros Pictures

Topics: Entertainment, TV and Film, Joker