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September 23, 2010

Joaquin Phoenix 'I'm Still Here' documentary nearly bankrupted director Casey Affleck

Hoax film caused massive financial worries

Joaquin Phoenix 'I'm Still Here' documentary nearly bankrupted director Casey Affleck

I'm Still Here director Casey Affleck claims making the hoax documentary about Joaquin Phoenix's foray into hip-hop almost left him broke. Affleck told Filmindustrynetwork.biz that he had to put his own money into the film to fund the year-long shoot.

"Having something at stake is a great motivator and once this thing became public for me that was very helpful because there was no question: I had to see it through, no matter how long it took. I went broke," he said. "I hadn't worked for more than a year, and I was pouring money into the movie. I had to stop for a month to do The Killer Inside Me. If I hadn't, I wouldn't have been able to finish the film - I was out of money. There was a lot at stake financially and, if we had left it there, it would have been very damaging to Joaquin's career."

The film has been a box-office flop, earning only $259,000 after two weeks in the US. It has received mixed reviews - with many commentators describing the movie as "a smug hoax".

Phoenix is now rumoured to be signing on for Clint Eastwood's next film - a biopic of J Edgar Hoover - and he is also set to play a shoe salesman who is a foot fetishist in the drama Big Shoes.

Phoenix has also apologised to US chat show host David Letterman after he went back on the chat show for the first time since his notorious interview last year.

The actor caused a stir during the 2009 appearance, which saw him bearded, overweight and near-silent throughout the interview.

Phoenix has now admitted it was all part of a stunt for I'm Still Here. He told Letterman: "I hope I didn't offend you in any way."

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