Joaquin Phoenix in a still from Joker.
Joaquin Phoenix in a still from Joker.

Joaquin Phoenix and Robert De Niro butted heads while shooting Joker

Actors Joaquin Phoenix and Robert De Niro butted heads while shooting Joker. Phoenix refused to attend read-throughs of the script, while De Niro insisted on them.
Press Trust of India | By HT Correspondent
UPDATED ON APR 14, 2020 03:25 PM IST

Actor Joaquin Phoenix says he doesn’t like to rehearse and because of this habit he had a clash with Joker co-star Robert De Niro, who prefers having a read-through while working on a film.

In a lengthy profile piece with GQ, Phoenix said the anxiety of not knowing helps him perform better and hence he was unwilling to join De Niro and rest of the cast for a read-through. The 45-year-old actor, who won this year’s best actor Oscar for his performance in the movie, revealed that De Niro even called director Todd Phillips to make sure he turns up.

“Tell him he’s an actor and he’s got to be there. I like to hear the whole movie and we’re going to all get in a room and just read it,” De Niro told Phillips.” Phoenix said he was adamant to give read-through a miss and told Phillips, “There’s no f****** way I’m doing a read-through.”

Also read: Joaquin Phoenix on checking into rehab after road accident: ‘I was being an idiot, drinking, trying to screw people’

However, the actor, who is also a huge fan of De Niro, attended the meeting at veteran star’s production office. He murmured his way through the script and after the meeting De Niro invited him to his office to talk where the two eventually cleared the air. The actor said De Niro took his face into his hands and kissed him on the cheek. “It’s going to be OK, bubbeleh,” said De Niro, who played talk show host Murray Franklin in the film. Pheonix made a clean sweep winning all the major awards this year for his portrayal of DC supervillain.

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