Joaquin Phoenix, who delivered an epic performance as Arthur Fleck in the hit movie Joker won the Oscar for best actor at the 92nd annual Academy Awards and gave a powerful speech where he spoke about his late brother, River Phoenix.
Phoenix, who was nominated four times prior, took the opportunity during his acceptance speech to talk to the audience, his fellow nominees and urged those watching at home to focus on the state of humanity.
He said: “I’ve been thinking a lot about some of the distressing issues that we are facing collectively, and I think, at times we feel, or were made to feel, that we champion different causes. But for me, I see commonality. I think whether we’re talking about gender inequality or racism or queer rights or indigenous rights or animal rights, we’re talking about the fight against injustice.”
Phoenix continued: “I think that we’ve become very disconnected from the natural world and many of us, what we’re guilty of is an egocentric world view. A belief that we are the center of the universe. I think we fear the idea of personal change because we think that we have to sacrifice something to give something up, but human beings at our best are so inventive and creative and genius that I think when we use love and compassion as our guiding principles, we can create develop and implement systems of change that are useful to all Homosapien and the environment.”
The 45-year-old actor went on to explain: “I’ve been a scoundrel all my life. I’ve been selfish I’ve been cruel at times, hard to work with, and I’m grateful that so many in this room have given me a second chance. I think that’s when we’re at our best. When we support each other. When we help each other to grow, when we guide each other toward redemption, that is the best of humanity.”
The Hollywood talent concluded his speech by fighting tears as he quoted his late brother, River, by saying: “When he was 17, my brother wrote this lyric, and he said: ‘Run to the rescue with love and peace will follow.’ Thank you.”
One person had this reaction: “He truly poured his heart out and delivered one of the most memorable speeches is The Academies history.”
The Oscar winner has recently embraced the fight against injustice.