Joaquin Phoenix, Philip Seymour Hoffman for ‘The Master’ in Venice: awesome?

Joaquin Phoenix

Here are some photos from the premiere of Paul Thomas Anderson’s The Master at the Venice Film Festival. Naturally, Joaquin Phoenix and Philip Seymour Hoffman were the big stars on the red carpet, and they did the deed with aplomb. Phoenix looks very ready to earn his rep back, but I’m not sure about those (strategic?) grey stripes that are resting atop his temples. Sadly, Amy Adams was not on hand, and I bet producer Harvey Weinstein was kicking himself for not making her come just so that someone — anyone — would have to wear one of Georgina Chapman’s awful Marchesa dresses. You know, if I was a famous movie star with a lot of power, “absolutely NO Marchesa” would be one of my contract stipulations. I still can’t believe Kristen Stewart got wrangled into one of those hot messes. At this point, Joaquin and Philip have probably never been happier in their entire lives to not be a chick.

Philip Seymour Hoffman

Joaquin Phoenix

As for the premiere itself, things appeared to go quite well, and The Master is currently enjoying a 100% rating on the Rotten Tomatoes aggregator. If the full trailer is any indication, the movie will be a treat for critics of Scientology, and we’ve already heard that Tom Cruise “had issues” with the film after PTA gave him a private screening (they previously worked togeter in Magnolia, so PTA may have figured that Tom at least deserved a “heads up”). PTA himself has given a new interview to The Daily Beast, and he wants people to know that while the movie bears striking similarities to the CO$ origin story, that’s not all that’s going on. I think PTA was ultimately aiming to examine the lives of WWII vets and their reinsertion into society. Here are some excerpts:

On The Master‘s subject matter: Anderson freely acknowledges that this flamboyant character–a self-described author, sea captain, physicist, and philosopher-was inspired by L. Ron Hubbard. Once word of this leaked out, The Master immediately got tagged as Anderson’s “Scientology movie.” “I was naive,” the director says, somewhat ruefully. “I should have known that’s what people would latch onto.” But if you’re expecting to see an exposé of that controversial “religion,” you’ve come to the wrong movie. This is not to say Scientologists are going to like what they see. But Anderson, who gets a bit stressed when the subject comes up, finds himself “much more defensive and protective of [Scientology] than I would have thought.”

On Hoffman and Phoenix: He knew from the start he wanted Hoffman to play the Master, and his actor-friend was an integral part of the writing process. “He was my first audience. I’d hand him chunks and hear what he responded to.” For the longest time Anderson wasn’t even sure whose story it was. It was Hoffman who clarified it for him: “This is Freddie’s [Joaquin Phoenix's character] story.” He also had Phoenix in mind as he was writing, and he knew the actor would keep his writing from sounding too literary. “At a certain point, Joaquin is just incapable of faking it.” Anderson was amazed by Phoenix’s discipline on set. “He’s like Daniel [Day-Lewis], his level of concentration. He just got in character and stayed there-for three months he didn’t stop. Joaquin is very unpredictable. A lot of the time I didn’t know what he was going to do.” In one scene Freddie has to be restrained by a cluster of policemen. He laughs remembering the head of the stunt crew advising his men to take it easy on the star. “Six of these stunt guys couldn’t hold him down!”

[From The Daily Beast]

The entire interview is well worth reading, and at one point, PTA even laments that he wishes he possessed “more diversity as a filmmaker.” Wait, what? Another new revelation — PTA has recycled some of the unused scenes from There Will Be Blood for use in the The Master. This movie is sounding better and better with each passing newsbite.

Joaquin Phoenix

Here’s some photos from the earlier photocall in Venice. These guys can’t wait for the film to be unleashed, right? Oh Harvey. Why you so sexy?

Joaquin Phoenix

Joaquin Phoenix

Joaquin Phoenix

Photos courtesy of WENN

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69 Responses to “Joaquin Phoenix, Philip Seymour Hoffman for ‘The Master’ in Venice: awesome?”

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  1. Helen says:

    Oh Joaquin, why YOU so sexy?

  2. Steph says:

    Joaquin is looking good!

    • Sarah says:

      except for the hair – good god the hair. Looks like he cut it himself, while drunk, in poor light, with blunt nail scissors.

    • Eve says:

      Agree with both. He’s looking good — but that hair is a mess. It’s like he cut it himself (in the dark).

      • pinchofsalt says:

        A HAWT man nonetheless! LOVE him.

      • Eve says:

        Hey, I love him too!

        It’s just that I’d like to see him looking his best (with his usual dark, short hair).

        Anyway, I’m glad his weight loss seems to have been just for the movie. Looks like he’s back to his normal weight in these pictures.

      • normades says:

        The brown pants are hot. I wanna take em off!!!

  3. Bek says:

    I totally agree with you about Marchesa. I can’t stand their dresses. It’s just so ice skating yuk.

  4. lw says:

    Love Joaquin. And he’s getting sexier with age.

  5. Micki says:

    I’m going to watch. Joaquin is never boring.

  6. Louise says:

    I know it’s completly off topic but when I just wanted to say that, when I see Joaquin Phoenix, I can’t help but thinking at his brother, River who would have been 42 in August…

    • Lem says:

      Funny. I never see River when looking at or watching Joaquin. Joaquin is such a powerful force. I only ever see Joaquin. Not to mention PSH is a beast of an actor. This should be a powerful film.
      Sometimes, I do see River in bloated Leo

      • Louise says:

        The death of his brother just broke my heart at the time and, if I watched (and still watch from time to time)River’s movies, I could never watch one of Joaquin’s. I don’t know why. I believe, he will always be his brother’s shadow, even 19 years later…

      • pinchofsalt says:

        Oh, leave Leo alone. This is about Joaquin. And not about his brother either. He WAS a good actor, Joaquin IS a great actor.

      • Louise says:

        I have the right to say what I want, thank you very much.

  7. claire says:

    Man, do I love me some Joaquin Phoenix. I don’t even care that his hair is two colors and looks like he went at it with a weed whacker.

  8. Lara says:

    I just can’t wait to see this movie, it will be extraordinary. By the way, I did see The Lawless yesterday and it was such a wasteland of talent. I love every single actor who was in this film (except Mr. Labeouf) but they deserve so much more. It’s a shame. I am not sure what exactly Gary Oldman was doing there. Jessica Chastain, gorgeous and talented, was totally miscast, there was absolutely nothing for her to chew on. Tom Hardy (my new imaginary boyfriend (!)) was believable, but all that moaning and groaning that he was using to express his feelings or opinions became a little bit ridiculous. This is the Labeouf’s vehicle, he is the only actor who didn’t look irrelevant due to the range of his “acting skills”. So, do not waste your money and wait for the DVD.

  9. Raven says:

    Does anyone know what really happened with him? Does he have mental illness? Because he sure looked like someone off his meds or undiagnosed for awhile. Now, he looks like he’s back on, healthy and really present.

    • Eve says:

      His mental/nervous breakdown was a hoax. Just a performance for the movie (I’m Still Here) he was making with his brother-in-law Casey Affleck.

      • melior says:

        Is it just a hoax? Personal quote from him on Imdb: “My significant other right now is myself, which is what happens when you suffer from multiple personality disorder and self-obsession.”

    • Mira says:

      @Raven – What he did for “I’m Still Here” was sort of public performance art. Instead of shooting the film on a set and releasing as a mocukumentary (which it’s not), they decided to do it in real time and build the film guerrilla style by assessing the public reactions to their stunt. They did not realize that their plan would snowball into a huge debate on whether or not Joaquin was having a real breakdown. After a point they could not abandon the project because that would have proven to be a bigger disaster and also Joaquin took a real risk with this project jeopardizing his career.

      Having said that, suggest you see the movie. Joaquin is a tour-De-force in it. He is very good as a vain yet vulnerable celebrity trying to build a career in rap. The movie in itself does not hold legs because Casey and Joaquin ultimately failed to achieve the purpose of trying to comment on the nexus between celebrity, media and the celebrity-obsessed public. Until I see The Master, I consider his performance as JP in the movie as his best.

      • normades says:

        I think the person who lost the most from the “I’m still here” fiasco is Casey Affleck. JP was already an Oscar nominated A-list young actor who is proving with “the Master” that people are excited to see him come back. He was already known for being a somewhat fragile, excentric guy.

        But pre-”here” Casey was on the cusp of breaking in and had the rep of being a nice guy brother/brother in law to JP’s sister. After “Here” all these stories came out how he was a sexual predator, cheater, enabler, egoist, blow hard etc. and now I don’t think he’s even on the cusp’s rador.

        JP can and will come back, but Casey lost out big.

      • Mira says:

        Both of them lost out big by the negative reactions to their filming style and to the film itself. Casey still had “The Killer Inside Me” out in 2010 and he’s disturbingly good in the movie. With Casey, I think, the sexual harassment allegations did him some damage. I don’t like Casey, although I liked his performances in Gone Baby Gone and The Killer Inside Me. I get a creepy vibe from him and he also settled the harassment cases out of court.

        For Jaoquin, since he was playing out the JP character in real time, he had no option than to maintain his weight, the bread and dope-look until the movie was to be released because they indented to reveal the “hoax” only after the movie’s release. He also had to hide out for a year with that get-up and only few people were in on the plan including his agent, publicist, and the cast and crew on the film.

        The negative publicity and the Joaquin-breakdown bandwagon killed the prospects of viewing the movie for the movie in itself. I guess both of them decided to lie low for a while after the film’s poor performance. Casey is back to filming as well. He should have at least two movies out by next year.

  10. sweetpea says:

    Didn’t Joaquin and his family grow up in a quasi cult?

  11. Jennifer says:

    Sorry, but I just can’t..with the Joaquin bandwagon. He looks ill, way too pale and like his skin is cold and clammy. After that ridiculous shitheap “I’m still here”…ugh.

    • stinky says:

      ok i was gonna wait my turn and post at the end, but i’ll jump in and add that he looks like he needs some fruits & veggies or something. i agree there’s a bad pallor to his skin. he’s workin’ it tho! showing up and OMG i cant wait for the flik. seriously so happy in anticipation!!

  12. Lem says:

    His hair looks like a skinned manged raccoon mullet wiglet.
    I mean, this weather is doing horrid things to my hair too, but I’d tame it for a red carpet appearance.
    His slacks/tie color choices are doing nothing for his skin coloring or hair coloring. Standing next to the great PSH should be an easy no brainer for Joaquin. Yet…

  13. Turtle Dove says:

    ………he’s back…!

    I’ve missed JP. I was talking to my roommate the other day about what actors are amazing that are talented and crush worthy. I could only name two … JP was there at the top of the heap.

    Yes, the hair is a mess, but he has a a film in pre-production named “As I Lay Dying”… that hair just may fit the bill for the title. lol

  14. deb says:

    So glad to see JP back & looking good. He’s one of my all thine faces – Walk the Line has to be one of the best film bios ever. He was just totally channeling Johnny cash.

    Do you get paid every time you mention KStew’s name? FFS she’s not the only person who has ever worn marchesa.

    • Justyna says:

      She was not the only one, but 1) that particular dress was probably the worst or at least in the top 3 of the worst from the entire collection of hideous Marchesa dresses and 2) Kristen tries to come off as this rebel, non-conformist, real and not at all the PR-gamy type of celebrity (I know, hahaha) and still she wore this godawful dress, in which she looked like she just stormed a funeral home, stole a set of drapes and some veiled hats and made a dress out of it, just because she wanted to butter Weinstein up.

      I love Walk the Line too. Joaquin is a great actor but he also has a very good singing voice. I can’t wait to see The Master and his other movie with Marion Cotilard.

  15. garvels says:

    I hope Phoenix is over his bizarro phase..he actually is a really good actor.

  16. jamie says:

    Seeing all these guys together makes nostalgic for the late 90s and the Miramax heydays.

  17. Kennedy says:

    Forget Joaquin, PTA is so ridiculously handsome and the fact that he is a GENIUS filmmaker… well, let’s just say I’d hit it… I’d hit it HARD. Gah I love him so much.

  18. A says:

    Joaquin is fantastic. Fassbender, Joaquin Phoenix, Denzel Washington, Sean Penn, PSH, Clooney, Pitt…why are there no younger actors that can come close to these guys? It seems like all the truly talented actors are 35 and over. Oscar Isaacs is pretty talented and will be in a Coen Brothers film (also, yea for an actor of color)…supposedly Garrett Hedlund is really good in certain roles (the same Coen Brothers film, On the Road)….but we need more younger, hot actors to follow in the footpaths of PSH, Washington, etc.

    • Eve says:

      Oscar Isaac!!! Absolutely LOVE him.

      He’s also one of my imaginary husbands here on Celebitchy.

    • lrm says:

      don’t forget daniel day lewis, RDJ, Depp in his earlier days, Don Cheadle…
      I agree with you-I have thought the same thing: I am just not feeling any of this younger crowd as far as ‘serious acting’….but, time will tell.
      There’s so much cr*p as far as scripts to choose from these days….seems like franchises and 3D animation are all they fund.
      We need a rennaissance-late 90′s was good for film and music, into the early 2000′s…but the past decade has been mediocre at best, IMO.

  19. Anoni Mus says:

    I love me some Joaquín! I would so hit that. Good to see him back, and I can’t wait to see this movie.

  20. Mira says:

    Joaquin, the things I would do to this man! Have been obsessively tracking very word on The Master and the consensus in Venice is that Joaquin is a lock for Best Actor nomination and if there’s no other performance that matches or exceeds his in The Master, he is sure to win an Oscar. Some reviews say even DDL as Lincoln will have to recreate Abe to beat Joaquin’s insane sh-t in The Master. If he wins an Oscar, he should just say “I’m Still Here” and walk off the stage :D

  21. tru tru says:

    I have not been this excited to see a movie in a loooong time!

  22. eric says:

    PPhilip Seymour Hoffman amazing in Capote, I’ll watch the Master just because of him

    • Alexa says:

      I am IN LOVE with PSH (Can I do that?) too! It’s not healthy, but he looks so much like my father and my first ever best friend – I feel like I know him. (But I won’t act on in it ;-)

  23. Mrs. Ari Gold says:

    @Bedhead – tell me you are being sarcastic about Harvey being sexy! (I think you were) He is the most vile disgusting pig of a human being and everyone in the film business knows he is pure evil!

  24. erika says:

    just licking my chops for this one!!!

  25. Kosmos says:

    Great actors, but since this film closely mimics the Scientology cult, and L. Ron Hubbard, I’m not so sure I want to see it or support such a thing? I’m so against Scientology to begin with, so honestly, I would avoid any association, even seeing a film or documentary that draws attention to it.

  26. CitizenErased says:

    Ah Joaquin, welcome back. You even look pretty sexy. I was completely horrified by I’m Still Here, but I’m willing to forgive all.

  27. Snowpea says:

    Joaquin is the hottest man on the planet. So smouldering. So intense. So wound up.

    You just know if it was you and him locked in a room together he would do some very bad things to you ; )

  28. Vegan chick says:

    I looooooooooove this VEGAN!
    What a wonderful human being.
    Ohhhhh so sexy