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celebrity news

Joaquin Phoenix faked it

Posted by Patrick Sauriol on Saturday, September 18, 2010

For two years the manufactured hype surrounding Joaquin Phoenix's strange spiral downward has been with us. Last week the world finally had the opportunity to see I'm Still Here, the so-called documentary directed by Phoenix's brother-in-law Casey Affleck. The film arrived without much fanfare and turpid box office, which might be behind the admission Affleck made to The New York Times two days ago: that Phoenix had faked his retirement from acting and the bizarre personality changes he exhibited during the making of the "documentary". And that rap career thing too.

Calling Phoenix's role-play acting in front of talk show hosts, audiences and the public "the performance of his career," Affleck told the paper that it had all been staged, the ultimate in "gonzo filmmaking." Affleck's admission didn't take many people by surprise but it has given some ammunition to call the pair out as charlitans and hucksters. The revelation that they tried to pull the wool over the media's eyes probably won't hurt either man's career in show business in the long term, but for the moment, their reputations appear to be slightly bruised from the negative reviews and critical commentary.

Phoenix is returning to David Letterman's Late Show program next Thursday night, 18 months after he first turned up looking like a homeless person and sticking chewing gum to the underside of the talk show host's desk. Undoubtedly audiences will be tuning in to see what admission Phoenix will give as to the charade. Affleck told the Times that his friend won't be in character on Thursday, and that they never meant to offend anyone when they were making their film.

-The New York Times.

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