I'm Still Here

Synopsis: In 2008 while rehearsing for a charity event, actor Joaquin Phoenix, with Casey Affleck's camera watching, tells people he's quitting to pursue a career in rap music. Over the next year, we watch the actor write, rehearse, and perform to an audience. He importunes Sean Combs in hopes he'll produce the record. We see the actor in his home: he parties, smokes, bawls out his two-man entourage, talks philosophy with Affleck, and comments on celebrity.
Genre: Comedy, Drama, Music
Director(s): Casey Affleck
Production: Magnolia Pictures
  1 win & 3 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
108 min

I know I'm a winner,

I know that I'm hot...

This is the Phoenix family.

Straight to the top,

gonna make it

- Gonna make it...

- And with talent like this,

these kids are really

gonna make it.

Gonna make it, gonna make it,

gonna make it

Gonna make it.

My first guest...

- Burning up the big screen...

- Academy-award nominated actor...

- "Gladiator"...

- "Gladiator"...

- ...and "Signs."

- Here's Joaquin Phoenix.

You never played guitar

or sang before this?

Had you ever sung before?

It was completely foreign to me.

When I held the guitar the first time

I didn't know what to make of it.

Joaquin Phoenix,

"Walk the Line."

I keep a close watch

on this heart of mine

I keep my eyes

wide open all the time

I keep the ends out

for the tie that binds

Because you're mine

I walk the line.

I'm just f***ing, like, stuck in this


like, self-imposed

f***ing prison of

characterization, you know?

It happened to me young.

It's like the chicken or the egg.

I don't know

what came first--

whether they said

that I was

emotional and intense

and complicated,

or whether I--

or whether I was

truly complicated

and intense and then

they responded to it.

Then, like, once they

responded to it,

then I responded

to what they were saying.

And, yeah, I utilized it

in some ways.

And there's-- I--

I am embarrassed about that.

And that's what a lot of this

is about.

I mean, I guess that's why

I agreed to do this documentary

is because I don't wanna--

I don't want to play the character

of Joaquin anymore.

Like, I want to be

whatever I am.

And my artistic output

thus far,

when I am really f***ing

honest with myself,

has been f***ing fraudulent.

And now for the first time

I'm doing something

that is-- whether you

like it or not,

it really represents me.

And maybe that's f***ing stupid,

to want to be represented,

to care-- I don't care.

Not that.

But I don't want to be--

you know,

think what you think about me.

Hate me or like me,

just don't misunderstand me.

That's it.


I love those rare pure moments

in between action and cut,

but everything else

was f***ing misery to me.

We talk about it being

this creative expression,

and really you're just

a f***ing puppet.

You're this dumb f***ing doll

that wears what someone else

tells you to wear,

stands where someone else

tells you to stand,

says what somebody else

tells you to say.

That's not expression.

That's not creativity.

And I have more to offer

than that.

My purpose on this earth

is not to interpret

somebody else's words

or to try and capture

a moment for somebody else.

It's to bring

what is inside me out.

Everybody in life

has at one point said,

"I don't like my job.

I don't like who I am.

I don't like the people

that are around me.

I want something better for myself,"

that "I have a dream."

I think everyone's about that

at some point.

My dream, my responsibility...

...is to mess up--

guys, we're shooting.

- Hey, Antony?

- Yeah?

My man, can you get the dogs out

while we do this interview, please?

I work for Joaquin

essentially as a general assistant.

I've known him for 15 years.

He's a friend.

We've made music together.

I've cooked for him. I've cleaned.

You see, I've been walking backwards

Up steepest of hills

The tears can't wash away

What money could not buy.

This is where I live

at the moment.

It is a sober living,

um, and I am one

of the residents here

after having a problem

drinking too much.

Not too much--

well, too much.

Drinking too much

and getting into trouble.

Hopefully working on this,

if it's cool with, you know,

you, Case, and just to kind of

get somebody to assist

and we can throw him some bread

now and again and stuff.

I met him

when I played a concert.

I used to play in a band

and I played a concert

at the Whisky A Go Go here in Los Angeles.

We started to become friends

when we both got into motorbikes.

And you got one as well, and we all started

riding around on motorbikes in New York.

That was, in a way,

where we sort of, like,

hit it off as friends.

If you can call it that.

Smile, dude.

This is going to be f***ing great.

We're going to go to San Francisco.

We definitely need you there.

We were asked to create

an evening

at Davies Symphony Hall

to honor Paul Newman

who had just passed away

and to raise a lot of money

for very chronically ill children.

When did you find out

you were gonna come here?

It seems like this afternoon,

but it couldn't have been.

Last night.

Yeah, last night about 10:20

I got a text from Joaq.

- I'm playing a hit man?

- Yeah.

- Bullshit.

- Yeah.

Are you f***ing serious?

I'm not being typecast

in my f***ing theater debut

when I'm also retiring.

That's what f***ing stup--

that's f***ing stupid.

There he is!

How are you?

It's all of us

coming together which is exciting.

That's a cool thing,

is for-- this is kinda like...

it's kinda like the dream team.

I love you.

- Okay, that's all.

- This is the world--

that's-- "The World

of Nick Adams" is the piece?

- Yeah.

- Are you playing Nick, Case?

He has it much worse.

He never leaves the stage.

Oh, I see, start there.

I remember I started saying some lines

and he kinda stops me,

he whispers at me and he goes,

"Hey, man, I didn't know

we were supposed to do it

in an accent."

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Casey Affleck

Caleb Casey McGuire Affleck-Boldt (born August 12, 1975) is an American actor and director. He began his career as a child actor, appearing in the PBS television film Lemon Sky (1988) and the miniseries The Kennedys of Massachusetts (1990). He later appeared in three Gus Van Sant films – To Die For (1995), Good Will Hunting (1997), and Gerry (2002) – and in Steven Soderbergh's comedy heist trilogy Ocean's Eleven (2001), Ocean's Twelve (2004), and Ocean's Thirteen (2007). His first leading role was in Steve Buscemi's independent comedy-drama Lonesome Jim (2006). Affleck's breakthrough was in 2007, when he was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in the western drama The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford and acted in the crime drama Gone Baby Gone, directed by his brother Ben Affleck. In 2010, he directed the mockumentary I'm Still Here. He then had a string of successful films in the early 2010s, with Tower Heist, ParaNorman, and Interstellar, and received particular praise for his performance as an outlaw in the indie film Ain't Them Bodies Saints. In 2016, Affleck starred as the lead in the drama film Manchester by the Sea. For his performance as Lee Chandler, a grief-stricken man, he won the Golden Globe, BAFTA and Academy Award for Best Actor, and received a Screen Actors Guild Award nomination. In 2017, Affleck received critical acclaim for his leading role in the supernatural drama film A Ghost Story. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "I'm Still Here" Scripts.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 18 Jun 2024. <https://www.scripts.com/script/i'm_still_here_10554>.

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