Joaquin Phoenix to join on Paul Thomas Anderson’s ‘Inherent Vice’

Danny Bowes
Movie Talk

Joaquin Phoenix is re-teaming with “The Master” writer-director Paul Thomas Anderson, Variety reports. Phoenix has joined the cast of “Inherent Vice,” from Thomas Pynchon's novel, presumably as the lead. Robert Downey, Jr. had previously been rumored to be playing the role.

“Inherent Vice,” widely hailed as one of Pynchon's most entertaining novels, is a darkly comic detective story set in 1969 Los Angeles, following the attempts of private detective and marijuana enthusiast “Doc” Sportello as he attempts to get to the bottom of a labyrinthine mystery involving drugs, organized crime, cults, and an omnipresent surf rock band called The Boards.

Produced by Megan Ellison's Annapurna Pictures—also behind not only “The Master” but “Lawless,” “Killing Them Softly,” and Best Picture nominee “Zero Dark Thirty—“Inherent Vice” will mark the furthest foray into outright comedy either leading man Phoenix or writer-director Anderson has attempted in some time, if ever. There is, as yet, no start date or other confirmed cast.