Is it simply us or go Joaquin Phoenix"s infamously cringy 2009 interview top top Late Night through David Letterman seem likewise cringy to the Joker"s interview ~ above the Murray Show? Minus the murder of course.

If you like to watch old interviews the actors and also actresses odds space you"ve most likely come across Phoenix"s very cringy interview. You could have also watched it live. If not, you"ve more than likely only viewed it freshly because every one of Letterman"s cringy interviews are simply now resurfacing.

city hall the interview you know something is up. Phoenix does not seem favor himself and also Letterman is provoking him, trying to do jokes come defuse the tension. Yet there to be something deeper walking on and also for once, Letterman wasn"t in top top the joke. Here"s the story about what really taken place in the infamous interview.

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The Interview Was part Of an Act

the all started with a film dubbed I"m quiet Here, the brainchild of Phoenix and Casey Affleck, who were finest friends at the time and likewise brothers-in-law.

I"m still Here is a mockumentary spoof film the Affleck, who additionally directed, and also Phoenix wrote together. It complies with Phoenix in actual life indigenous the allude when the announced he to be retiring from exhilaration to seek a music career together a hip hop artist.

Related: Inside Howard Stern"s partnership With David Letterman

Phoenix took technique acting above and beyond, staying in character because that the whole time they were filming, even during public appearances and certain interviews. There was lots of confusion but Phoenix made that seem really believable. This is Phoenix we"re talk about, ~ all. He"s excellent stranger things in his life.

nobody knew about the film except the brothers-in-law. As soon as he appeared on Late Night in 2009, that was clearly in character unbeknownst to the audience and also even Letterman himself.

Phoenix in character. Via: The winter
The an initial thing Letterman picked up on was Phoenix"s appearance and also right the end of the gate he made a joke that didn"t seem come amuse the actor. "You look different than ns remember you."

because Letterman didn"t know around what Phoenix to be doing and wasn"t in top top the joke, we"re city hall his yes, really reaction come Phoenix"s weirdness. He continued to pester about Phoenix"s beard, making Phoenix feel uncomfortable.

Related: Drew Barrymore Bursts right into Tears as soon as David Letterman Surprises she

Phoenix was wearing sunglasses, his hair was longer and unkempt, the slurred his words and seemed the end of it, not really comprehending what Letterman is talking to that about. It seemed choose he was hungover or also drunk.

once Letterman request him things he gave tiny to no reply and looked confused when the audience continued to laugh at his behavior and also Letterman"s creepy uncle jokes.

"What execute you have them on," Phoenix inquiry Letterman referring to the audience laughing in ~ him talking about pursuing i know good hop. "What execute you gas em" up with?"

as soon as Phoenix said he functioning on his music, Letterman says, "You recognize that appears unlikely." Phoenix didn"t speak anything, he simply shook his head, stunned. Once Letterman asked if Phoenix could introduce a clip from his recent film, Two Lovers, Letterman, and his sidekick Paul Shaffer "manically laugh." Phoenix said, "Are girlfriend f---king kidding? room you serious? ns don"t also know what the clip is."

Related: The reason Casey Affleck and also Joaquin Phoenix walk From friend To adversaries

Phoenix began to obtain pissed off, Letterman jabbed more, and also said, "Relax we"re having actually fun." Joaquin asked, "That"s fun?"

Finally, Letterman said, "Joaquin I"m i m really sorry you couldn"t be below tonight." Phoenix mockingly called Letterman a funny guy.

We know that that was every a ruse top top Phoenix"s component but what did live audiences think? What if Phoenix wasn"t in character? Letterman tho would have made his cringy jokes and made Phoenix feel awkward.

He returned to "Late Night" To Explain

A year ~ the interview, Phoenix went back to Late Night, to explain what yes, really happened.

I"m tho Here was just released, so by the time he go on the show, everyone knew what Phoenix had been doing for the past year.

This time, Phoenix showed up cleaned up, and also as shortly as he sat down, Letterman lugged up the elephant in the room. He began by explaining he"s a large fan of Phoenix"s and knew there had actually to it is in something up v him the year before. "So what carry out you have to say for yourself?" he said.

Phoenix thanked him for having in on both times and also went right into explaining I"m still Here, and said he had to carry out what the did to do the film feel prefer a reality show that "explored celebrity."

"You"ve interviewed many, many people and I assumed that you would recognize the difference between a character and also a actual person, yet I apologize," Phoenix said. "I hope i didn"t offend you in any way," Letterman said no, and that he believed it to be fun.

"We"d hope to which a speak show and I was in search of a beatdown and I got one. Ns really give thanks to you for that," Phoenix joked.

Letterman called Phoenix that once the film came out that felt favor he"d been fooled, and asked Phoenix just how he seemed during the interview and if he"d come off together a jerk. Phoenix claimed he didn"t even together he jokingly made a look at that claimed otherwise.

Phoenix top top Letterman in 2010. Via: El Periódico
"I played right into your hands, didn"t I? basically you came looking for a beat down and you acquired one. Yet is it edited in together a way to do it look prefer "Oh negative Joaquin, big dumb Dave is picking on poor Joaquin."

Phoenix said he didn"t think so. Yet it is amazing to view that Letterman to be so interested in just how he was regarded in the film. Perhaps he was just making one more joke but it still provides you think, through all these previous interviews resurfacing the don"t necessarily paint Letterman in the best light.

It"s likewise ironic the we"re in reality saying "Oh bad Lindsay Lohan and poor Jennifer Aniston" for being subjected to Letterman"s monster creepy interviews now that we"ve looked ago at his past behavior.

The sad thing is the Phoenix"s interview could have to be real-life and also Letterman would have had one more cringy interview resurfacing best now. Wonder exactly how it felt for Letterman to it is in played because that once.

Next: Here space Joaquin Phoenix"s 10 ideal Movies before Joker (And 5 Worst)

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