Joaquin Phoenix is done acting.
At a recent production of Ernest Hemingway’s "The World of Nick Adams" benefitting Paul Newman‘s Hole in the Wall Camps, Phoenix told a surprised "Extra" reporter that he was retiring from acting.
No, really. He’s done.
"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," Phoenix told the reporter.
When "Extra" asked why, he said, "I’m not doing films anymore. … I’m working on my music. I’m done. I’ve been through that," he said on camera.
In the video above, he delivers the surprising news to a startled reporter, after which Phoenix turns and appears to storm off, leaving an uncomfortable Casey Affleck to confirm the news.
The 34-year-old Phoenix’s last film will be James Gray’s "Two Lovers," scheduled for release Feb. 13. He costars with Gwyneth Paltrow in the film, which has the tagline: "Sometimes we leave everything to find ourselves." No word on whether he will do press for that film. But he’s probably contractually obligated to do some.
Given Phoenix’s uncomfortable relationship with the media and promotional aspects of the movie biz, his "outta here" announcement is not totally surprising.
But it could also be a total goof. Remember his strange exchange at the 2006 "Walk the Line" premiere about that brain-eating frog coming out of his hair?
]]>He was being interviewed on the red carpet when he suddenly asked the reporter, "Do I have a large frog in my hair?"
Reporter: No, no.
Phoenix: "Something’s crawling out of my scalp."
Reporter: No, you look great.
Phoenix: "No, but I feel it. I’m not worried about the looks. I’m worried about the sensation of my brain being eaten. … What did you ask me?"
Phoenix has been working on a record with the British band the Charlatans. And he’s already won a Grammy for his work on the "Walk the Line" soundtrack.
Phoenix has been nominated for two Oscars, one for his portrayal of legendary singer Johnny Cash in "Walk the Line" and another for his supporting role in "Gladiator,” with Russell Crowe, in 2000.
Maybe he’ll come back someday. We hope so. Dude’s a dynamite actor.