• Golden Globe Awards


Some great actors are as comfortable in front of a press line as they are in front of the camera; others, not so much. No one for instance has ever accused Joaquin Phoenix of answering journalists’ questions as effortlessly as he disappears into the characters he portrays onscreen. Those have included the emperor Commodus in Ridley Scott’s The Gladiator for which he was nominated for a Golden Globe; singer Johnny Cash in Walk the Line, for which he took home the Best Actor prize in 2006; the spiritual drifter from The Master for yet another nomination; and last year’s Her in which he portrayed a quiet, soulful man not yet fully recovered from a failed marriage who writes letters for an on-line service, vicariously embodying strangers’ emotional intimacy, at the same time unable to fulfill his romantic nature.Now the 40-year-old actor has made it five with a well-deserved nomination as Best Actor in a Motion Picture Comedy for his performance as Larry ‘Doc’ Sportello in Paul Thomas Anderson’s Inherent Vice based on the Thomas Pynchon novel of the same name.The role marks a high point in Phoenix’s already impressive filmography; and yet with his three Academy Award nominations and now five Golden Globe nods, the actor can still come off as somewhat awkward in his public interactions, as if conditioned by an extreme shyness.He has at times seemed to intentionally keep the press and his fans off-balance as with his elaborate “hoax” a couple of years ago, when he publicly announced his retirement from acting in favor of a new career in rap music. The ‘experimental role-playing,’ reminiscent of Andy Kaufman’s more bizarre happenings, turned out to be part of a full-immersion role for a film directed by long-time friend Casey Affleck. Some in Hollywood were less than amused. With The Master, it became apparent that he was far from retired.Next up for him is a role in the upcoming as-yet-untitled Woody Allen film with Emma Stone.Aside from his acting career, Phoenix has directed several music videos for bands such as Ringside, People in Planes and Silversun Pickups. He is an avid animal rights activist and supports PETA and In Defense of Animals. He is also a supporter of charities such as Amnesty International, The Art of Elysium and serves on the board of The Lunchbox Fund which feeds school children in South Africa.Luca Celada