Friday, February 13, 2009

What's Up with Joaquin?

I was up late on Wednesday night and channel-surfed through about two minutes of David Letterman's attempt at interviewing Joaquin Phoenix. I found it tiresome, as I'm sure Letterman did.

On Thursday, I see here and there that people are wondering, "What's wrong with Joaquin?"

Maybe not much. He may be involved in a bit of anti-marketing, Joaquin doing his best Andy Kaufman.

It makes sense. Kaufman could be tiresome, too. But he attracted attention.

Phoenix's occasional involuntary smirks--in response to Leterman's funny crack about the Unabomber, for example--seem to betray an actor trying to stay "in character." Or an actor trying to send the message, "I don't want to do publicity tours."

On the other hand, Phoenix may really be that troubled.

Either way, he'll sell some tickets to his newest movie.

But the video below is painful.


Spencer Troxell said...

I think Joaquin Phoenix is just an unusual guy, and that's okay. I was irritated by the way he was treated on the Late Show, and have been even more irritated by the way his behavior has been received across the web.

I don't think he was acting. I think he was just being himself.

Mark Daniels said...

My feeling is that it's an exaggerated version of himself, at most. Nobody on a publicity tour for a film--and this isn't the first time he's been on one--would expect to give one or two-word answers to questions about his film.

It seems far likelier to me that he decided a Crispin Glover impression would be the best way to get out of doing publicity for a film...or to remember Gwyneth Paltrow's name.

Phoenix is a fantastic actor. I've enjoyed his performances in several films.

And frankly, I feel that his appearance on Letterman's show was really the performance of a great actor.

Spencer Troxell said...

you're probably right. I did a little googling, and the possibility of a hoax seems legit.

The Borat Thing is getting a little old at this point.

Mark Daniels said...

When I Googled Phoenix's name, I found a video from skycast in which he talked about his work on 'Walk the Line.' The guy was effusive, verbose.

People do change. People do become disenchanted. But I think that he was trying to punk folks when he appeared on Letterman.