Report: Phoenix rap ambition a hoax

Jan. 28, 2009 at 10:49 AM
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LOS ANGELES, Jan. 28 (UPI) -- Joaquin Phoenix isn't really pursuing a career as a rap artist, two sources close to the Hollywood actor said.

Phoenix, best known for his roles in "Parenthood," "Gladiator" and "Walk the Line," recently announced he was quitting the acting game so he could concentrate on his music. Earlier this month, he gave a widely criticized performance of three rap songs at a Las Vegas nightclub during which he fell off the stage.

Entertainment Weekly said the performance left people in the audience and the entertainment industry wondering whether the whole thing was a hoax or "he's truly lost his marbles."

Phoenix's brother-in-law and "To Die For" co-star Casey Affleck is also supposedly chronicling Phoenix's career transition for a documentary.

"(Phoenix) said: 'It's a put-on. I'm going to pretend to have a meltdown and change careers, and Casey is going to film it,'" one source who recently worked with Phoenix told EW.com.

"It's an art project for him," added another source. "He's going full out. He probably has told his reps that he's quit acting. Joaquin is very smart. This is very conscious. He has a huge degree of control."

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