Joaquin Phoenix is an Academy Award-winning Hollywood legend, and he’s showing no signs of slowing down anytime soon. His peculiar and mysterious persona makes one wonder what the man is like in real life, and it turns out that if you’d like to see for yourself, all you have to do is check out his latest film, C’mon C’mon.
Joaquin Phoenix plays Johnny, a radio journalist who interviews various young people throughout the film about their hopes, dreams and general perspective on life. Well, as it turns out, none of this was scripted. These are real interviews with real people that Phoenix himself conducted. C’mon C’mon writer/director Mike Mills recently told us how Phoenix’s authenticity and warmth allowed these kids to open up to him:
For those of you who have not seen C’mon C’mon, Mike Mills is absolutely right. One of the highlights of the flick is seeing these authentic moments where kids are touching on some real-life topics. Knowing that Joaquin Phoenix himself was the one who was able to help them open up and truly exist at that moment is charming.
This moment launched us into a conversation about whether or not Joaquin Phoenix was technically “acting” in those scenes. Was he being Johnny, or was he essentially just being Joaquin? Mike Mills attempted to explain the nuance and layers involved in delivering such a performance:
Joaquin Phoenix’s co-stars Gaby Hoffman and Woddy Norman disagreed with Mills, debating the Oscar nominee’s implication that acting in itself isn’t being “authentically present.” Of course, the debate was all in good fun and full of laughter, ending with Hoffman saying they were going to “teach Mike Mills a thing or two.” You can see the full clip in the video at the top of this article.
C’mon C’mon is in theaters right now. As for Joaquin Phoenix, there are plenty of exciting projects on the way, so stay tuned. If you’re anxiously awaiting his next release and pondering what to watch, we’ve got you covered.