Joaquin Rafael Phoenix is an American actor, environmentalist, animal rights activist, and producer. He has received numerous accolades, including an Academy Award, a Grammy Award, and two Golden Globe Awards. In 2020, he was named on the list of the 25 Greatest Actors of the 21st Century by The New York Times.
About Joaquin Phoenix in brief
Joaquin Rafael Phoenix is an American actor, environmentalist, animal rights activist, and producer. He has received numerous accolades, including an Academy Award, a Grammy Award, and two Golden Globe Awards. In 2020, he was named on the list of the 25 Greatest Actors of the 21st Century by The New York Times. As a child, Phoenix started acting in television with his brother River and sister Summer. His first major film role was in SpaceCamp. He was credited as Leaf Phoenix, a name he gave himself. He later went back to his original name and received positive reviews for his supporting work in the comedy-drama film To Die For and the period film Quills. He received wider attention for his portrayal of Commodus in the historical drama film Gladiator, for which he was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. He subsequently earned Best Actor nominations for portraying musician Johnny Cash in Walk the Line, an alcoholic war veteran in The Master, and the title character in Joker. He is a social activist and has lent his support to several charities and humanitarian organizations. Phoenix is also known for his animal rights advocacy; he has been a vegan since the age of three and often campaigns with PETA and In Defense of Animals. His mother, Arlyn, was born in New York City to Ashkenazi Jewish parents, whose families were from Hungary and Russia. His father, John Lee Bottom, is originally from California and is of mostly English descent with some German and French ancestry.
He was born with a mark on his lip, which he claims is not a cleft lip. Phoenix and his siblings were eventually discovered by one of Hollywood’s leading children’s agents, Iris Burton, who got the five children acting work, mainly doing commercials and television show appearances. In 1984, Phoenix co-starred in the ABC Afterschool Backwards: The Murder Riddle of Riddle Riddle. Also in 1984, he made guest appearances in The Fall and Guy Hill Blues and Sherote to Kill the Wizard. He starred in the Alfred Hitchcock Presents episode Very Happy Ending, playing Max, a 12-year-old who goes to the Kennedy Center to learn about the NASA space program and undergoes amateur astronaut training. He made his theatrical debut in the film Don’t Tell Tell Tell Kids, playing a child in a film about Alfred Hitchcock’s The Happy Ending. He also appeared in the television series Seven Brides for Seven Brothers in the 1982 episode “Christmas Song’s Song”. At age 15, he changed it back to Joaquin at age 15. He is on the board of directors for The Lunchbox Fund, a non-profit organization which provides daily meals to school students in the South African town of Soweto. He also has a half-sister named Jodean from his father’s previous relationship. Phoenix is the third of five children, following River and Rain, and preceding Liberty and Summer, all of whom are actors.