Joaquin Phoenix to retire from movies to pursue music

November 3, 2008  |  1:54pm
The internet was ablaze with news last week that Joaquin Phoenix has announced plans to retire from acting. To make music. And though the serious actor has caused waves with his weird jokes in the past, it seems that everyone is buying what he's selling this time around. 

While at the Paul Newman benefit, Phoenix rambled to Extra, "I want to take this opportunity... also to give you the exclusive and just talk a little bit about the fact that this will be my last performance as an actor... I'm not doing films anymore." Cue stunned reporter. "I'm working on my music," Phoenix continued. "I'm done. I've been through that."

Just to clarify, the reporter spoke with Casey Affleck, who was there when Phoenix announced his retirement. "I don't think he's kidding," he told Extra.  "He's got music and stuff." Then, just to make sure they weren't totally insane, Extra contacted Phoenix's rep who hilariously told the show, "That is what he told me."

The retirement thing isn't what is shocking. Those in entertainment world are constantly faking their exits from the business, before realizing that they're bored or actually do have material left in them. M.I.A. may be the most recent big example of this trend.

No, whats strange with this is that, as far as anyone can tell, Phoenix never had much of a music career. In fact, when several journalists asked during his Walk the Line press tour if he'd ever make a record, he repeatedly said that he wouldn't. And while he did end up working with the Charlatans on an album, it was never actually finished.

We're not doubting his talents (he sounded great as Cash, and music runs in his veins - his sister Rain is in her own hip band, papercranes) it just seems to have come out of nowhere. Not to mention that it seems totally plausable that he could do both movies and music (many have), so why drop acting altogether?

On Wednesday, NY Mag revealed details about the music that Phoenix has (maybe, kinda) been working on. Apparently, he's in a band with former Spacehog member Anthony Langdon called the Lady is a Tramp. Only problem is, Langdon is reuniting with his old band. Guess it's back to square one for the ex-actor. 

Only time will tell if this "retirement" is for real and if Phoenix is capable of delivering good tunes. Holding your breath is not advised.

Related links:
YouTube: Joaquin Phoenix as Johnny Cash in Walk the Line
Review: We Own the Night
Joaquin Phoenix on IMDb

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