Joaquin Phoenix's gritty reimagining of the villainous Joker is apparently catnip for award-winning actors: After reports swirled on Monday morning that none other than Robert De Niro was circling the project, there appears to be yet another celebrated star in the mix.

TheWrap is reporting that Frances Conroy is currently in talks to play Penny, the mother of Phoenix's Joker, in the film. Conroy won several Screen Actors Guild Awards and a Golden Globe for her role on HBO series "Six Feet Under," and has also starred in dozens of episodes of "American Horror Story," among other high-profile projects.

If cast, the actress would add to the already-impressive lineup led by Phoenix and De Niro. "Deadpool 2" star Zazie Beetz is also in talks to join the feature.

Despite its aim to attract big names to the ensemble, this Joker flick is positioning itself as a bit of an outlier to the bigger, flashier fare that DC has released in recent years. This film being billed as more of a crime thriller than a big-budget superhero feature, and is reportedly taking some inspiration from Alan Moore's graphic novel "The Killing Joke," as well as the De Niro film "The King of Comedy."

Production is slated to start this fall. Stay tuned for more intel as it becomes available.

[via: TheWrap]