The 92nd Academy Awards took place on Sunday night and saw lots of big winners, including Joaquin Phoenix, who became the second person in history to win an Oscar for playing the Joker. During his acceptance speech for Best Actor, Phoenix spoke about a range of issues and even included an emotional mention of his late brother, River Phoenix. However, there was one moment in his speech that took many people by surprise. During the broadcast, the actor brought up the processes behind dairy farming. “We feel entitled to artificially inseminate a cow and steal her baby, even though her cries of anguish are unmistakable. Then we take her milk that’s intended for her calf and we put it in our coffee and our cereal,” Phoenix said in the speech. This moment caught the attention of some celebrities, who are now considering going Vegan. Lena Dunham, who is best known for the series Girls, tweeted that Phoenix's speech made her Vegan, and Jamie Lee Curtis, the star of Halloween, had a similar response.
“Welp, it finally happened- I do believe Joaquin Phoenix made me vegan,” Dunham wrote.
“I think me too @lenadunham,” Curtis replied.
You can check out the tweets below:
While some people heeded Phoenix's words, others weren't too happy about the speech. The actor received backlash from dairy farmers, who started firing back at the Oscar-winning actor, suggesting he leave Hollywood for a bit to see what rural America is all about.
"We have a free country, with freedom of expression, but we do wish that Joaquin Phoenix would talk with us, rather than at us," National Milk Producers Federation's Alan Bjerga told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "Because if he did he would learn a lot about the commitment that dairy farmers have for animal welfare." He added, "This isn't the first time he has made remarks like this, but it gets more prominence because it was in an Oscars speech."
Despite being the most nominated film at the Oscars this year, Joker was the lowest-rated Best Picture nominee on Rotten Tomatoes. The movie was met with mostly positive reviews when it premiered at the Venice Film Festival, where it earned the festival’s top prize. However, the film’s Rotten Tomatoes score dropped down to 78% once it was screened again at the Toronto International Film Festival, and now it's settled at 68%. Despite the mixed reviews from critics, the audience score is a bit higher, earning 88%.
What did you think of Phoenix's Oscars speech? Tell us in the comments!