Joaquin Phoenix Biography |
  • Joaquin Phoenix Biography

    Born: October 28, 1974 in Río Piedras, , Puerto Rico

    In 2012 Academy Award® nominated  actor Joaquin Phoenix will have three  films being released.  In addition to THE MASTER, he will also be seen starring opposite  Marion Cotillard and Jeremy Renner in the new film by James Gray. He has just completed work on the untitled Spike Jonze film where he falls in love with the voice of a computer co-starring opposite Rooney Mara.

    Joaquin Phoenix was born in Puerto Rico and began his acting career  at the young age of eight. As a boy, he made numerous television appearances  on such hit shows as "Hill Street Blues,” "The Fall Guy" and "Murder,  She Wrote.”   He was a regular on the  short-lived 1986 CBS series "Morningstar/Eveningstar,” and followed that  same year with his first feature  film role in SPACECAMP.   The following year, he starred  in RUSSKIES with sister Summer and Carole King. Two years later,  director  Ron Howard cast the  teenager  as Dianne Wiest’s son in his popular  family comedy PARENTHOOD.    It wasn’t until 1996 that  the  young actor  returned  to  the  fold with a stunning and critically-acclaimed performance opposite Nicole Kidman in Gus Van Sant’s TO DIE FOR. New York Times film critic Janet Maslin hailed the young talent as “an actor to watch for.” He next co-starred  with Liv Tyler,   Billy Crudup and Jennifer Connelly in INVENTING  THE ABBOTTS in 1997. That same year, he co-starred opposite Claire Danes, Sean Penn and Jennifer Lopez in Oliver Stone’s U-TURN.

    In 1998, Phoenix co-starred  opposite  Vince  Vaughn in two  very different  roles  -- as an American jailed in Malaysia for possession of drugs belonging to accomplice Vaughn in RETURN TO PARADISE,  and  as  a  dupe  to  Vaughn’s smooth-talking  serial  killer in the  black comedy,  CLAY PIGEONS.

    Continuing his ascendant  star  track,  Phoenix next  won  acclaim as  a  street  smart  adult bookstore clerk who helps detective Nicolas Cage search for the truth behind what appears to be a snuff film in Joel Schumacher’s dark thriller, 8MM.

    In 2000, a banner year for the actor, Phoenix starred in three very different films. He earned his first Academy Award® nomination co-starring opposite Russell Crowe as the complex Commodus in Ridley Scott’s Oscar®-winning Best Picture,  GLADIATOR.    In addition  to  nominations  for the Oscar®, the  Golden Globe and the  British Academy (BAFTA)  Award, he received awards  as Best Supporting Actor from the National Board of Review and The Broadcast Films Critics Association.

    He followed that  up with Philip Kaufman’s Oscar-nominated QUILLS opposite Kate Winslet and Geoffrey Rush in the  film based  on Douglas McGrath’s play about  the  Marquis de Sade, for which he won the Broadcast Film Critics Award as Best Supporting Actor. That same year, he also starred  opposite Mark Wahlberg, James Caan, Faye Dunaway, Ellen Burstyn and Charlize Theron in James Gray’s  THE YARDS.

    Phoenix continued  his busy career  as Mel Gibson’s brother  in the  M. Night Shyamalan blockbuster, SIGNS, which earned a half billion dollars worldwide. He reteamed with Shyamalan two years later  on his gothic thriller THE  VILLAGE, starring  as a young member  of an isolated  19th Century village whose desire to see the outside world threatens to break the community’s pact with the mysterious creatures which live in the surrounding forest.

    He provided the voice of Kenai in the animated Disney film BROTHER  BEAR and followed with the  romantic drama IT'S  ALL ABOUT  LOVE,  reuniting with actress  Danes in the  story of two lovers and their attempts to save their relationship in a near-future  world on the brink of cosmic
    collapse. He also starred in the dark comedy BUFFALO SOLDIERS opposite Ed Harris as a devious and clever American soldier stationed  in Berlin, and took the lead in the firefighting drama LADDER 49 opposite John Travolta, playing a firefighter who reflects on his life, loves and career while awaiting rescue from a blaze. And, in 2004, the actor earned  high praise for his turn as a cynical journalist witnessing the horrific genocide of the Tutsis in Terry George’s HOTEL RWANDA.

    In 2006, Joaquin Phoenix was hailed for his mesmerizing performance  as legendary singer- songwriter Johnny Cash (opposite Oscar®-winning actress Reese Witherspoon) in James Mangold’s riveting biopic, WALK THE LINE.   For his performance,  he collected his second  Academy Award® nomination (this time, as Best Actor) and won the Golden Globe as Best Actor in a Musical as well as nominations for BAFTA, SAG, BFCA and Chicago Film Critics Awards.

    In October of 2007, Phoenix was in WE OWN THE NIGHT  where  he reteamed with Mark Wahlberg and director James Gray and Focus Features and reunited him with director Terry George and Jennifer Connelly in the deeply moving RESERVATION ROAD. He reteamed with director Gray for TWO LOVERS, co-starring opposite Gwyneth Paltrow and Isabella Rossellini.

    On October 27, 2008, Phoenix reportedly  announced  his retirement from film in order to focus on his rap music, but the announcement turned out to be part of Phoenix's acting role in the film I’M  STILL HERE,  directed  by his brother-in-law,  actor  Casey Affleck. The film debuted  at the Venice Film Festival and the  Toronto International  Film Festival in 2010 and was released  in the summer of 2010 by Magnolia Pictures.

    A social activist, Phoenix has lent his support  to a number  of charities and humanitarian organizations, notably Amnesty International,  The Art of Elysium, HEART,  The Peace Alliance (an organization which campaigns for a United States Department  of Peace) and is on the  board  of directors  for The Lunchbox Fund. Phoenix narrated  the  film EARTHLINGS FOR  NATION  EARTH,  a video about the investigation of animal abuse in factory farms, pet mills, in industry and research. In
    2005, he was awarded  the “Humanitarian Award” at the San Diego Film Festival for his work and contribution  to EARTHLINGS. In 2005 he lent his voice to the documentary,  I’M  STILL HERE:  REAL DIARIES OF YOUNG PEOPLE WHO  LIVED DURING  THE HOLOCAUST.

    Phoenix has also directed music videos for Ringside, She Wants Revenge, People in Planes, Arckid, Albert Hammond, Jr and the Silversun Pickups.

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