‘Joker: Folie a Deux’ — My Recent Experience as a Background Actor

Playing a Gotham City Police Officer

Phil Rossi
6 min readApr 22


The Author on Set (The Joker Stairs/South Bronx)

As actors, we’re all in competition to get the parts. We submit and audition for wanted roles. Depending on the production, there could be a field of hundreds, if not thousands competing for the same role. To actors, these numbers seem daunting, if not infinitive.

As film and TV extras, we compete with one another to land these coveted roles. The submitted photos are sent to the production teams for selection and approval for background actors.

Once selected and booked, we leave the audition and selection process behind. Now it’s time to prepare, get into character, and perform.

Even as background actors, we may have more or fewer cues and action. On most sets, my fellow extras are supportive. We work, respect, and assist one another.

Gotham City’s Finest

My Recent Experience With ‘Joker 2’

Most of the film’s principal photography was shot in Los Angeles. Production was slated for a 10-day shooting schedule in and around New York City.

As a background actor, I was lucky and privileged to be selected and cast as a Gotham City Police Officer. I was also fortunate to be booked for six of those ten shooting days. Jackpot.

I can’t imagine, but only guess, the high number of submissions the casting agency fielded. Again, luck of the draw. Film and Television are visual mediums. It’s all about looks and balance.

It’s anybody’s guess what the criteria are. It’s subjective anyway you cut it. I don’t get all or most of the jobs I submit. But I got this one. Instead of analyzing and asking questions, I cleared my calendar and waited to hear from the casting agent. Following the Covid tests and fitting, the production days finally arrived.

The 10-day schedule was at four locations. Two days at the Manhattan district courthouse. Three days in New Jersey (the Arkham Asylum), and five days in the Bronx (the Shakespeare/Joker Stairs and the Bronx County courthouse).



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