Finally, the truth is out. Joaquin Phoenix has just been playing pretend for the last two years.
Many people were waiting for Phoenix’s return to ‘The Late Show with David Letterman’ next week to get the scoop, although Edward James Olmos pretty much spilled the beans to Fancast last week. The New York Times has just published the truth in an interview with Casey Affleck, Phoenix’s brother-in-law and director of the recent mockumentary I’m Still Here: The Lost Year of Joaquin Phoenix, which opened last weekend to not-so-great reviews.
Apparently, the idea was inspired by the late, great Hunter S Thompson and his “gonzo” style of journalism, and thus Phoenix spent two years of his time on this planet living the life of an imploding celebrity.
“It’s a terrific performance, it’s the performance of his career,” Affleck said. “I never intended to trick anybody. The idea of a quote, hoax, unquote, never entered my mind. We wanted to create a spacee [where] you believe what’s happening is real.”
However, he assured us that all of the illicit drug use and prostitution in the film was staged. “There were multiple takes, these are performances.”
He confirmed that Letterman was not in on the joke during that infamous appearance, either.
“There was no wink,” Affleck said of the film. He was seemingly inspired to finally let the cat out of the bag now that he’s suffered through angry reviews of the project. “It is a hard movie to watch.”
So we can expect “J.P.” to be coherent and back on his game next week when he starts his “winking” tour, shedding the character of the hairy, bloated ego that we’ve been seeing for so long. Word is he’s been entertaining new movie offers, so his “retirement” is finally over, too. Will he just slide right back into his much-lauded career with no problem, or will he face some troubles with being accepted by moviegoers again?
Let’s wait to see how Letterman treats him.