With one nomination in his repertoire already Joaquin Phoenix may be in line to win his first Academy Award when the time comes in February after his performance in new film The Master has received widespread plaudits after the film was premiered at the Venice Film Festival on Saturday (August 8th).
Phoenix shared the award for Best Actor with his co-star Phillip Seymour Hoffman, who himself is generating a lot of buzz for his role in the film and was honoured with the award for Best Actor at the Oscars in 2006 for his role as Truman Capote in the film Capote.
Also honoured in Venice was the film's director, Paul Thomas Anderson, who took the Best Director gong home, however there was some controversy over the fact that the film didn't go home with the prestigious Golden Lion Award, the award handed to the Best Film of the festival. What seemed like a shoe-in to win the award, it instead went to South Korean film Pieta. The Master's producer Harvey Weinstein and Anderson both initially vented their frustration at being overlooked, however the festival's rule state that no film can be awarded more than two awards - so the fact that they managed three technically was more than enough to appease the two.
The Master, said to be loosely inspired by Scientology founder L RON HUBBARD, is set to be released in the US October 12 and in early November in the UK.