Instagrammers are flocking to the Bronx to pose on iconic Joker stairs
20th October 2019
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Instagrammers are flocking to the Bronx to pose for pictures on the now iconic Joker stairs – as locals warn visitors to stay away ‘or get robbed’

  • The stairs feature on posters, billboards, and loads of ads for the Joker film 
  • Stairs are near Arthur Fleck’s apartment – in real life they are in the South Bronx
  • In the film, Joaquin Phoenix’s character treks up the steps every day
  • When he becomes The Joker he dances triumphantly back down them 

A staircase in the South Bronx has become something of a magnet for tourists thanks to the new Joker film.

The enormous staircase, located at 167th Street, in the Bronx, New York City, features in the new Todd Philips movie when Joaquin Phoenix’s loner Arthur Fleck dances down them after becoming the Joker. 

Film fans are now heading to the location in an attempt to capture the perfect Instagram shot for themselves. 

The stairs feature on posters, billboards, and loads of ads for the Joker film

Stairs are near Arthur Fleck’s apartment – in real life they are in the South Bronx

One local suggested that the area was ripe for robbing people who decided to stop by…

Tourists, cosplayers and Instagram influencers are all making their way up to an area of New York City that doesn’t normally make it onto visitors lists of must-see attractions.

The steps are located just a short walk away from Yankee Stadium which has led to a rejuvenation of the area in recent years according to Vice.  

Until recently not many tourists ventured into the Bronx, which has long sought to shake an unfair image as a crime-ridden backwater. 

The borough’s biggest draws are the Bronx Zoo, the New York Botanical Gardens and the New York Yankees, the perennial baseball powerhouse that makes its home about a mile south of the steps, located on West 167th Street between Anderson and Shakespeare avenues. 

Since the release of Joker two weeks ago, many New Yorkers and out-of-towners traveled there to gawk, take selfies and, in the spirit of the Joker’s choreography, to ham it up.

‘There’s something about his moves. He just killed it. It was in his soul,’ said Jay Garcia, a 30-year-old radio host from the neighboring borough of Queens.

For longtime Bronx residents like Laura Harry, step streets are a common feature in the borough’s hilly landscape.

‘I’ve lived around here for 30 years … people use them every day,’ said Harry, as she stood at the top of the steep stairs with her groceries, gazing at the people below. ‘I’m fascinated, because they made the steps famous.’

Not everyone appreciates the extra attention, however. ‘Them stairs ain’t nothing but an asthma attack and a swift robbery set up… But you know … Welcome to The South Bronx,’ tweeted one person urging people to stay away. 

When Arthur Fleck becomes The Joker he dances triumphantly back down them… and now tourists are also attempting to reenact the move 

Joker has dominated the box-office for two weeks. It broke the record for the largest October opening weekend in movie history, at $96.2 million.

While the borough has struggled with its reputation as a dangerous place, it is perhaps ironic that a threatening figure like the Joker may have helped burnish its image.

‘It’s good for us. You know, publicity,’ said Jose Cruz, a longtime resident who climbs the 131 steps at West 167th Street daily. ‘People don’t have to be scared of the Bronx no more, the way they used to.’

The South Bronx has not long been on a list of must-see attractions for out-of-towners but the Joker movie is encouraging people to visit the borough 

Even this little dog is now getting in on the Joker act

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