The Phoenix Oscar Nominations

River Phoenix was nominated as Best Supporting Actor for his role in Running on Empty (1988) – which was released just 17 days after his 18th birthday. He lost out to Kevin Kline in A Fish Called Wanda, and died of a drug overdose five years later.

Joaquin Phoenix has received four Oscar nominations (up to and including 2022). The first three were Best Supporting Actor for Gladiator (2001), and two Best Actors: for Walk the Line (2006) and The Master (2013). On these occasions he lost out to Benicio del Toro in Traffic, Philip Seymour Hoffman in Capote, and Matthew McConaughey in Dallas Buyers Club. His fourth nomination was for the title role in Joker (2019), and this time he won the award for Best Actor.

By the way – did you know that the Phoenixes' real surname was Bottom?

© Haydn Thompson 2017–22