At long last, Joaquin Phoenix has made a public appearance to tell his version of what that whole hip-hop documentary mess was about. Appearing clean-shaven and back to normal on Letterman Wednesday night, Phoenix apologized to Letterman for any offense caused by his previous interview in February of 2009. In that interview, Phoenix appeared in character as a mumbling, monosyllabic drug user who had apparently given up his acting career to pursue life as a hip-hop artist. As was revealed earlier this week, it turned out the entire 19-month ruse was a stunt to promote Casey Affleck’s mockumentary about Phoenix’s invented alter-ego.
Now, the two-time Academy Award nominee says that the awkwardness of that interview should have been a tip-off, and in a thinly veiled insult he told Letterman, “I assumed that you would know the difference between a character and a real person.” Ouch.
The nominees for the upcoming Academy Awards were announced this morning. On the first anniversary of his death, Heath Ledger received a huge tribute: The late actor is an Oscar nominee for best supporting actor for his role as The Joker in “The Dark Knight.”
“The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” notched the most nominations with 13, including best picture, best director for David Fincher, best actor for Brad Pitt and a best supporting actress nod for Taraji Phenson. The other best picture nominees were “Slumdog Millionaire,” “The Reader,” “Milk” and “Frost/Nixon”.
Sean Penn’s turn in “Milk” is shaping up as the a front runner in the best actor race. The Academy also acknowledged Mickey Rourke’s return from a decade-long career in “The Wrestler.” The other nominees are Richard Jenkins in “The Visitor” and Frank Langella “Frost/Nixon.”
In the best actress category, there is plenty of star power among the nominees, including Anne Hathaway for “Rachel Getting Married”, Angelina Jolie for “Changeling”, Meryl Streep in “Doubt” and Kate Winslet for “Revolutionary Road”. Please God don’t let Anne and Mery TIE like they did at the Golden Globes, or we may get another cracked-out speech from Ann!Melissa Leo was a surprise nominee for her performance in the Sundance Film Festival winner, “Frozen River.”
“Doubt” produced two best supporting actress nominees for Amy Adams and Viola Davis. Penelope Cruz “Vicky Cristina Barcelona” is considered one of the early favorites in the category, which also includes Marisa Tomei in “The Wrestler”.
Robert Downey Jr. continued his year-long comeback with a supporting actor nomination for his role in the comedy, “Tropic Thunder.” Other nominees include: Josh Brolin in “Milk”, Philip Seymour Hoffman for “Doubt” and Michael Shannon for “Revolutionary Road”.
Heath Ledger, however, is the sentimental favorite among critics.
His performance as The Joker, however, didn’t carry over to the “The Dark Knight,” despite it’s $500-million haul at the box office. The picture was shut out of the best picture and best director categories.
The 81st-annual Oscars will be hosted by Hugh Jackman. The ceremony will be televised on Feb. 22 at 8 p.m. on ABC.
source: NY Daily News