There’s no doubt that Heath Ledger left huge shoes to fill. Ledger’s performance as The Joker in The Dark Knight was startling and inspired — winning him a posthumous Academy Award. It’s hard to imagine anyone following up on that, but the new trailer for JOKER shows that Joaquin Phoenix has his own powerful take on the epic DC Comic character. Showing his origin story, the film is as twisted, eerie, and thrilling as you could want — a psychological journey told with mastery and strong performances.

And Phoenix hasn’t taken on the role lightly. “I take a lot of time and consideration when making decisions and what I’m gonna work on always,” he told Collider. “So, in some ways, the process, which is obviously reading a script and meeting a filmmaker and then continuing to have meetings and discussions with Todd [Phillips]. I think he’s very impressive and he seems to have a very interesting understanding of this world and what he’s trying to say. And so there is something very appealing about that and working with him on this particular project. It feels unique, it is its own world in some ways, and maybe, mostly, it scares the fucking shit out of me or something. It might as well be the thing that scares you the most.”

You can see the whole trailer here:

JOKER promises to be as weird, wonderful, and terrifying as you would hope — and you can catch it in cinemas October 4th.