1. When we spoke to Joaquin Phoenix he talked about his mockumentary I’m Still Here, and the David Letterman interview he did to promote it: 

The only thing that bothered me was that it might be difficult for me to work again because obviously I wasn’t retiring and obviously I wanted to make films — and a certain kind of film — so the only thing that really gave me pause was at some point [thinking] “How will this affect my career?”
So much of the way we made the movie didn’t allow us the time to really consider things, and by the time we did, it was too late and we had painted ourselves into this corner. It’s funny because when I was going on Letterman, initially the idea was we were going to make some noise and do something much more extroverted and big and out there. …
Just before I went on, [director] Casey [Affleck] is like, “Listen, I think you’ve got to play this broken; I think the best way to put this together is that you will have gone and seen [rapper/producer] Diddy and he will say that your music is not working out … and then this is just heartbreak. … So you’re just virtually catatonic.” It was just this kind of switch, 180 degrees from what we initially talked about doing. … I think maybe if I had the time to think about it more, maybe it would’ve changed my opinion.


You can hear the full interview with Joaquin and read interview highlights HERE
Phoenix stars in the new film The Immigrant, and Her is now out on DVD.  View in High-Res

    When we spoke to Joaquin Phoenix he talked about his mockumentary I’m Still Here, and the David Letterman interview he did to promote it: 

    The only thing that bothered me was that it might be difficult for me to work again because obviously I wasn’t retiring and obviously I wanted to make films — and a certain kind of film — so the only thing that really gave me pause was at some point [thinking] “How will this affect my career?”

    So much of the way we made the movie didn’t allow us the time to really consider things, and by the time we did, it was too late and we had painted ourselves into this corner. It’s funny because when I was going on Letterman, initially the idea was we were going to make some noise and do something much more extroverted and big and out there. …

    Just before I went on, [director] Casey [Affleck] is like, “Listen, I think you’ve got to play this broken; I think the best way to put this together is that you will have gone and seen [rapper/producer] Diddy and he will say that your music is not working out … and then this is just heartbreak. … So you’re just virtually catatonic.” It was just this kind of switch, 180 degrees from what we initially talked about doing. … I think maybe if I had the time to think about it more, maybe it would’ve changed my opinion.

    You can hear the full interview with Joaquin and read interview highlights HERE

    Phoenix stars in the new film The Immigrant, and Her is now out on DVD. 

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  1. Fresh Air Weekend of 1/25/14

    Joaquin Phoenix and Jessica Lamb-Shapiro

    Check your local listings: www.npr.org/stations/

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  1. Joaquin tries to get away with something “not only illegal but not cool.” Terry laughs.

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  1. In today’s interview with Joaquin Phoenix we ask him about why his character in the film The Master speaks out of the side of his mouth: 

My dad sometimes would talk out of the side; he’d clench down one side of his mouth. And I just thought it represented tension in this way, somebody that’s just blocked and tight.
So I actually went to my dentist and I had them fasten these metal brackets to my teeth on the top and the bottom and then I wrapped rubber bands around it to force my jaw shut on one side. … After a couple weeks, the bands, they weren’t really strong enough to kind of hold it so I ended up getting rid of the rubber bands and I still had these metal brackets in and so it made me constantly aware of my cheek. You know, they had these pointy tips so they’d tear up the cheek a little bit, so I just then was constantly aware of it.
This is so f - - - - - - stupid. Why am I talking about this? … It’s not interesting, it’s so stupid. If I was driving and I heard this, I’d change the channel. … I’d be like, “Joaquin, shut up.”



image via interview magazine View in High-Res

    In today’s interview with Joaquin Phoenix we ask him about why his character in the film The Master speaks out of the side of his mouth: 

    My dad sometimes would talk out of the side; he’d clench down one side of his mouth. And I just thought it represented tension in this way, somebody that’s just blocked and tight.

    So I actually went to my dentist and I had them fasten these metal brackets to my teeth on the top and the bottom and then I wrapped rubber bands around it to force my jaw shut on one side. … After a couple weeks, the bands, they weren’t really strong enough to kind of hold it so I ended up getting rid of the rubber bands and I still had these metal brackets in and so it made me constantly aware of my cheek. You know, they had these pointy tips so they’d tear up the cheek a little bit, so I just then was constantly aware of it.

    This is so f - - - - - - stupid. Why am I talking about this? … It’s not interesting, it’s so stupid. If I was driving and I heard this, I’d change the channel. … I’d be like, “Joaquin, shut up.”

    image via interview magazine

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  1. Tuesday: Joaquin Phoenix speaks to Terry Gross about his role in Her, his experience as a child actor, and how he was never really leaving Hollywood to be a hip-hop artist. 

Join us for this wild ride of an interview (we had a lot of fun). View in High-Res

    Tuesday: Joaquin Phoenix speaks to Terry Gross about his role in Her, his experience as a child actor, and how he was never really leaving Hollywood to be a hip-hop artist. 

    Join us for this wild ride of an interview (we had a lot of fun).

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  1. Fresh Air film critic David Edelstein reviews ‘Her,’ calling it, “The best film of the year by a so-wide margin.” Her is the story of a man named Theodore (Joaquin Phoenix) who falls in love with his operating system, Samantha (voiced by Scarlett Johansson).

Phoenix wears glasses and a thick mustache, but behind his Groucho mask he’s wide open. He’s the kind of actor who works to get himself into a state where he loses his emotional bearings, which sometimes means he doesn’t connect with other actors. But in Her, he’s meant to be all by himself, responding to Samantha’s voice, and the performance is like a free-form solipsistic dance. It’s not pure solipsism, because Samantha exists. But you might be watching a 4-year-old talking to an imaginary friend; it’s that inward.
View in High-Res

    Fresh Air film critic David Edelstein reviews ‘Her,’ calling it, “The best film of the year by a so-wide margin.” Her is the story of a man named Theodore (Joaquin Phoenix) who falls in love with his operating system, Samantha (voiced by Scarlett Johansson).

    Phoenix wears glasses and a thick mustache, but behind his Groucho mask he’s wide open. He’s the kind of actor who works to get himself into a state where he loses his emotional bearings, which sometimes means he doesn’t connect with other actors. But in Her, he’s meant to be all by himself, responding to Samantha’s voice, and the performance is like a free-form solipsistic dance. It’s not pure solipsism, because Samantha exists. But you might be watching a 4-year-old talking to an imaginary friend; it’s that inward.

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  1. Paul Thomas Anderson on working with Joaquin Phoenix on his character’s physicality in The Master

Kind of early on, Joaquin let me know that actually his shoulder — I think from birth, he has kind of a messy shoulder. And he’s probably spent a lot of time trying to hide it or stand up straight so that he can twist his body around. He said, ‘Do you think it’d be alright if I do this?’ And I said, ‘Sure, great.’

But a couple days into the film, he was feeling more comfortable and just kept sliding into this skin that he was doing — these movements that were so incredible. I just didn’t want to jinx anything and say, ‘What are you doing?’ or ‘What’s going on?’ You’re in the middle of make-believe – you don’t want to break the spell. You just want to watch him do whatever he’s doing.

I have my own theories about it, because [Phoenix’s character] puts his hands on his hips – sort of stuff about his kidneys being torn up from the war. Maybe something happened. Maybe it’s just easier. Maybe it’s comfortable for him to reach back and hold his kidneys and help him stand. But then again, yeah, there’s always that thing — the way someone holds himself is an extension of what’s going with them on the inside. And I buy that too, for sure.
View in High-Res

    Paul Thomas Anderson on working with Joaquin Phoenix on his character’s physicality in The Master

    Kind of early on, Joaquin let me know that actually his shoulder — I think from birth, he has kind of a messy shoulder. And he’s probably spent a lot of time trying to hide it or stand up straight so that he can twist his body around. He said, ‘Do you think it’d be alright if I do this?’ And I said, ‘Sure, great.’

    But a couple days into the film, he was feeling more comfortable and just kept sliding into this skin that he was doing — these movements that were so incredible. I just didn’t want to jinx anything and say, ‘What are you doing?’ or ‘What’s going on?’ You’re in the middle of make-believe – you don’t want to break the spell. You just want to watch him do whatever he’s doing.

    I have my own theories about it, because [Phoenix’s character] puts his hands on his hips – sort of stuff about his kidneys being torn up from the war. Maybe something happened. Maybe it’s just easier. Maybe it’s comfortable for him to reach back and hold his kidneys and help him stand. But then again, yeah, there’s always that thing — the way someone holds himself is an extension of what’s going with them on the inside. And I buy that too, for sure.

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  1. I put the odds that Phoenix’s persona is an act at about 99.99 percent.  But notice I said “act,” not “hoax.” Hoaxes have no basis in reality,  whereas what Phoenix is doing feels more to me like “performance art.” I  think under all the outlandish antics, there’s an emotional truth. David Edelstein on I’m Still Here, the new film starring Joaquin Phoenix (Photo: Magnolia Pictures) View in High-Res

    I put the odds that Phoenix’s persona is an act at about 99.99 percent. But notice I said “act,” not “hoax.” Hoaxes have no basis in reality, whereas what Phoenix is doing feels more to me like “performance art.” I think under all the outlandish antics, there’s an emotional truth. David Edelstein on I’m Still Here, the new film starring Joaquin Phoenix (Photo: Magnolia Pictures)

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