Joaquin Phoenix Declares Award Season Is 'Total, Utter Bulls---'

Joaquin Phoenix
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Phoenix announced in 2008 that he was giving up acting, and that his film Two Lovers would be his last on-screen role. “I’m not doing films anymore,” adding “I’ve been through that. I’ve done it …I’m dead serious.” But, it was later revealed to be a staged hoax for brother-in-law Casey Affleck’s mockumentary I’m Still Here.

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Joaquin Phoenix doesn't care about Oscar season. And he may not have done himself -- or The Weinstein Co. -- a favor when he dismissed the awards circuit as "bullshit" in remarks published by Interview magazine. 

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Phoenix, the star of the Weinstein Co. awards contender The Master, responded to a question by Elvis Mitchell by saying that the awards circuit is "total, utter bullshit, and I don't want to be a part of it."

"I don't believe in it," Phoenix continued. "It's a carrot, but it's the worst-tasting carrot I've ever tasted in my whole life. I don't want this carrot. It's totally subjective. Pitting people against each other ... It's the stupidest thing in the whole world."

Phoenix infamously explored his own unease with the mechanics of celebrity in the mockumetary I'm Still Here. The actor -- who was also nominated for an Academy Award for his 2005 portrayal of Johnny Cash in the biopic Walk the Line -- said he didn't want to go through the process again. 

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"It was one of the most uncomfortable periods of my life when Walk the Line was going through all the awards stuff and all that," said Phoenix, who did take home a Golden Globe for Best Actor for his performance in the biopic.

"I never want to have that experience again. I don't know how to explain it -- and it's not like I'm in this place where I think I'm just above it -- but I just don't ever want to get comfortable with that part of things."

It isn't unprecedented for an actor who balks at the awards circuit to take home top prizes. Mo'Nique was reluctant to engage in Academy Award campaigning for Precious but she eventually took home the Best Supporting Actress Oscar anyway.