Acquaintances have often told Tom Thibodeau that the Bulls head coach bears a striking resemblance to Jack Nicholson’s Joker from the 1989 film Batman. Emboldened by the comparisons and with little to do over the NBA lockout, Thibodeau enlisted in acting classes in hopes of landing the role of a lifetime in this summer’s upcoming The Dark Knight Rises.
“I managed to track down Christopher Nolan’s phone number,” Thibodeau said. “It’s one of the perks of being a famous media personality. He politely declined my offer to play the role of the Joker in his new movie, so I had to take it up a notch.”
Thibodeau camped outside of Nolan’s residence for three days in full Joker makeup and costume until the famous director agreed to meet him.
“I’m a Chicago guy, so I love what Thibs has done with the Bulls,” Nolan said. “But with all due respect to Tom, we had no plans on bringing back the Joker character after Heath Ledger tragically passed away. Tom certainly has a lot of energy and commitment for the role, but we went in another direction with the film. Hollywood is a tough business and Tom is a new actor. He will learn to deal with rejection.”
Thibodeau isn’t giving up that easily. He has coached Bulls practices in the Joker costume and often asks Derrick Rose “Why so serious?” when the Bulls star is too hard on himself.