His starring role in Joker has no doubt led to Joaquin Phoenix needing to buy a whole new trophy cabinet as the awards continue to come flying at him. His magical awards season run carries on as Phoenix has now come away with a win at the Screen Actors Guild awards for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor on Sunday, where he remembered fellow Joker actor Heath Ledger during his acceptance speech.

The moment fans are all talking about from last night’s SAG Awards came during Joaquin Phoenix acceptance speech when he gracefully paid homage to late actor Heath Ledger, who of course played the role of the Joker in 2008’s The Dark Knight, and himself won an Oscar for his outstanding work. Phoenix said this about the late, great Heath Ledger.

“I’m standing here on the shoulders of my favorite actor, Heath Ledger.”

Fans have been absolutely taken aback by the actor’s genuine sincerity, with Joaquin Phoenix being praised himself for such a classy move. Ledger sadly passed away in the same year as The Dark Knight’s release at the age of 28. Having created such a definitive take on the character, all subsequent portrayals thereafter have been compared to Ledger’s, with his haunting performance winning him the Academy Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role.

Of course, following the Screen Actors Guild Awards win, Phoenix also hopes to bring home the little golden man for his work in Joker, and with the actor sweeping up awards left and right this is looking more and more likely. Having now collected a Golden Globe and a Critics Choice Award as well as emerging victorious at the SAG Awards, Phoenix is no doubt preparing his acceptance speech for the upcoming Academy Awards.

Phoenix won the major category over Leonardo DiCaprio for Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood, Christian Bale for his role in Ford v Ferrari, Adam Driver in Marriage Story and Taron Egerton in Rocketman. Other than praising Heath Ledger, Phoenix also used his time on stage to demonstrate even further his humility, praising each of his fellow nominees individually.

“There would always be two other guys that I was up against and we’d always lose to this one kid…every casting director would always whisper, ‘It’s Leonardo.’ You’ve been an inspiration for over 25 years to me and so many people.”

When addressing Christian Bale, Phoenix jokingly communicated his longing for the actor to put in just one bad performance for a change.

“It’s infuriating. I wish you would. Just suck once.”

He then praised Adam Driver for his growth over the last few years, and described his recent performances as “beautiful, nuanced, incredible, profound”, before nodding to Egerton and saying, “I’m so happy for you” and that he “can’t wait to see what else you do.”

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Phoenix’s open honesty has been a very welcome addition to his acceptance speeches during this years’ awards season, and we can’t wait to see what he has to say whilst collecting the Academy Award for Best Actor that is surely now his to lose. This comes to us from the official SagAwards.org website.

Jon Fuge at Movieweb


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