Days after the release of the controversial but successful crime drama Joker, star Joaquin Phoenix proved himself to be very unlike the dastardly character in real life. While driving his Tesla in West Hollywood on Tuesday, Phoenix accidentally scraped the bumper of a parked L.A. County Fire Dept. truck. Because the damage was minor and the truck was unoccupied, many motorists may have been tempted to immediately flee the scene. That wasn't the case for Phoenix, who went out of his way to track down the paramedics and let them know about the accident. This is obviously the exact opposite of what we would expect from someone like Arthur Fleck, who seems to relish in destruction.
Following the accident, Joaquin Phoenix located the paramedics nearby as they were on a call. Taking full responsibility, Phoenix admitted he misjudged the distance between the truck and his Tesla. Because L.A. property was damaged, the police were called, a damage report was filed, and insurance information was exchanged. Damage to the truck was also said to be minimal, with only a minor scratch afflicting the vehicle. Meanwhile, the Tesla driven by Phoenix got the worst of the accident, suffering damage to the right front quarter panel. Because Phoenix was reportedly "cordial and easy to deal with" for law enforcement, the actor was ultimately not ticketed for the accident. Sometimes it pays to be the good guy.
You can certainly see another side of Phoenix in the movie Joker. Directed by Todd Phillips with a screenplay co-written by Phillips and Scott Silver, the movie presents a new take on the Clown Prince of Crime, offering an original origin story for the iconic Batman villain. Zazie Beats, Frances Conroy, and Robert De Niro also star. As perhaps the most "realistic" portrayal of the supervillain yet, the movie boasts no supernatural elements and is definitely not your typical comic book adaptation.
Rather, it is a psychological thriller that serves as a character study for one of the most demented psychopaths in the history of pop culture. Although disturbing and gritty, the movie has proven to be a huge hit financially and with critics, breaking multiple October box office records in the process.
Still, some people are very unhappy with the release of Joker in theaters. Prior to its premiere, there were concerns that the movie would inspire copycat killers or mass shootings. The fears had gotten to the point where security had been increased at showings of the movie and costumes were banned at many cinemas. Fortunately, the movie's release didn't bring about any real-life violence, and most viewers seem very happy with the result. Despite the controversy, Joker is already generating a ton of Oscar buzz, with the performance of Phoenix in particular having many calling for him to receive a Best Actor nomination.
Kudos to Phoenix for doing the right thing. These types of accidents do happen, and as always, it's best to look at it knowing that it could have certainly been worse. Perhaps one of the most infamous Hollywood car crashes involved Joaquin Phoenix, who was saved from his overturned car by iconic director Werner Herzog, which you can listen to in the video below. In any case, Phoenix will likely be taking those sharp turns a bit more carefully when driving his Tesla from now on. This news comes to us from TMZ.