Although Mark Hamill has come full circle recently with his film career, returning to the role that made him a star, Luke Skywalker, in last year’s Star Wars: The Force Awakens, his role as the voice of the Joker has come to define his career just as much as his turn as a Jedi. For many fans, Hamill is the definitive voice of the DC Comics villain and as such, his opinion on all things Joker is held in high esteem.
During a recent phone interview with Polygon, Hamill was asked what he thought of Jared Leto’s recent turn as the Clown Prince of Crime in this summer’s Suicide Squad. Although Leto’s performance was panned by many critics, Hamill doesn’t subscribe to the notion that the actor “ruined” the character or even did a bad job.
In fact, Hamill claims that he loved Leto’s interpretation, noting that he has yet to see a Joker performance that has made him go, “That was terrible.” Hamill believes that the key to enjoying different versions of the character, including Leto’s, is to consider what that iteration of the character needed to be in that particular moment. For instance, Hamill argues that Jack Nicholson’s Joker was much different than Heath Ledger’s because it simply had to be.
“Everyone brings a different spin to the character and you have to look at each script separately,” Hamill said. “I don’t think there’s a definitive version of the Joker and I don’t think there can be. It’s like Hamlet, really. It’ll be constantly redefined.”
While Hamill is a fan of Leto’s interpretation, he does sympathize with fans who were upset by it and have been critical of the overall direction that DC movies have taken in recent years. He argues that fans should make sure to let their voices and opinions be heard because it will make a big different in how future films turn out.
Hamill is launching a new show this month called Mark Hamill’s Pop Culture Quest, airing on Lionsgate’s online specialty channel, Comic-Con HQ. The show details Hamill’s status as an avid collector of everything nerdy, including comics, board games, and action figures, and will also see the actor travelling around the country to meet other collectors. He will also reprise his role as Luke Skywalker in Star Wars: Episode VIII, which is due out December 15, 2017.