Joaquin Phoenix Docu Gets September Release Date

Was Joaquin Phoenix really serious in his aim to be a hip-hop star, or was his 2008 retirement from acting just a publicity stunt? People will have the chance to answer the question themselves come September when “I’m Still Here,” a documentary chronicling the actor’s surprising career shift is shown in theaters.

Magnolia Pictures has acquired the worldwide rights to show the film, which focuses on Phoenix’s decision to retire from acting and pursue a career as a hip-hop artist. Phoenix, who earned an Academy Award nomination for playing country music legend Johnny Cash in “Walk the Line,” said in an interview with David Letterman following his surprise retirement that he got bored with acting. Complete with shaggy hair, Phoenix claimed in the Letterman interview that hip-hop has always been his passion. Last year, the 35-year-old “retired actor” said he was collaborating with hip-hop mogul Sean “Diddy” Combs on a mostly self-produced album. Almost a year later, no album from Phoenix the hip-hop artist has yet to hit record stores.

Magnolia Pictures said the film, directed by Phoenix’s brother-in-law, Casey Affleck, is not a mockumentary as what most people perceive it to be. Described by the independent film outfit as “a portrait of an artist at a crossroads,” “I’m Still Here” will open in the US on September 10.