As the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival draws closer, officials have announced the second recipient for the TIFF Tribute Actor Award.
Today, Joana Vicente and Cameron Bailey, Co-Heads of TIFF, today announced that three-time Academy Award–nominated actor Joaquin Phoenix will be honoured with one of two TIFF Tribute Actor Awards at this year’s TIFF Tribute Gala awards event.
This year will see Phoenix take on his first comic book movie role with Todd Phillips’ JOKER. The standalone origin story will hold its North American premiere at TIFF this year, while its world premiere will be held at the Venice Film Festival a week before.
“Displaying both raw instinct and consummate technical skill, Joaquin Phoenix is the complete actor, and one of the finest in contemporary cinema,” said Bailey. “Over three decades, he has brought a piercing truth to each groundbreaking role. TIFF is thrilled to be celebrating an artist of his calibre with this inaugural award. We can’t wait for Festival audiences to experience his electric turn in Joker.”
With a wide-ranging career spanning over 35 years, Phoenix has starred in such films as The Master, Inherent Vice, Walk the Line, Gladiator, To Die For, and Her. He has been nominated for three Academy Awards for his roles as Commodus in Gladiator, Freddie Quell in The Master and Johnny Cash in Walk the Line, for which he won a Golden Globe.
“We’re thrilled that the extraordinarily talented Joaquin Phoenix will be honoured at the TIFF Tribute Gala this September,” said Vicente. “His outstanding contribution to cinema acts as a testament to TIFF’s core mission to transform the way people see the world through film.”
The first solo film centered on Batman’s arch-rival, JOKER is set in 1981 and follows Arthur Fleck, a failed stand-up comedian who is driven insane and turns to a life of crime and chaos in Gotham City.
TIFF previously announced that Meryl Streep will receive the other TIFF Tribute Actor Award, sponsored by RBC. Taika Waititi will receive the TIFF Ebert Director Award, and Participant Media will receive the TIFF Impact Award, accepted by Founder and Chairman Jeff Skoll and CEO David Linde.
TIFF 2019 runs from September 5-15.