Joaquin Phoenix on Letterman

I came across this video of Joaquin Phoenix on Letterman and was left speechless.  Joaquin seems almost despondent and his appearance leaves something to be desired.  He’s a relatively skilled actor, but his segment on Letterman left viewers feeling confused and wishing they could offer him a comb and perhaps a razor.

Phoenix is visibly perturbed during his interview with Letterman and at one point slaps his gum onto Dave’s desk after a complaint is made about it.  Granted Letterman is not being gentle to Phoenix, but he’s also not exactly Katie Couric.  Phoenix should know better than to expect to be treated with respect when he looks like a hobo.

Could Joaquin Phoenix’s appearance on Letterman be an elaborate hoax?  TMZ seems to agree with that assessment.  They claim that his aspirations of becoming a rapper are part of his “phony stony act”.

Assuming this is a prank, I’m not sure it’s useful to his career, but it does get his story in papers across the country.  If Joaquin Phoenix wants to degrade himself on Letterman, more power to him. Free PR, anyone?