Hit film producer Jason Cloth knows what can lift the spirits of cinema audiences depressed by the grim world of Covid-19. “People are afraid, they’re tired,” says the 54-year-old Canadian, who is one of the industry’s biggest private financiers. “If we can truly give them some uplifting escapism, they will go back.”
With a string of box office successes to his name, Cloth has a record of understanding what audiences want. His biggest success was the 2019 film Joker starring Joaquin Phoenix as Batman’s nemesis. He says he put up 25 per cent of the reported $64m cost of the movie which took more than $1bn at box offices worldwide, making it one of the most profitable comic-book productions of all time.
Cloth questions whether that film, which was criticised for its violence, would still be a hit in today’s bleaker times. “Would Joker have done as well if it