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Joaquin Phoenix has suggested that eating animals is ‘unevolved’ and ‘so f*cked up’.

The Oscar-winning actor made the comments in a recent interview with Vanity Fair magazine.

‘It’s so f*cked up’

During the interview, the Joker star discussed the moment that inspired his family to go vegan; when he was three, the Phoenix clan witnessed fishermen brutally battering suffocating fish to death.

When the interviewer apologized for his plate of raw mackerel (the conversation took place at a Japanese restaurant), Phoenix made a comment that the writer says may or may not have been a joke.

Phoenix said: “Dude, do your thing. Not everyone is as evolved. It’s up to you. It’s so fucked up!”

‘Didn’t want to participate’

Phoenix spoke out about the moment he and his family saw the violence inflicted upon fish in more detail in a 2019 interview with Brut.

He said: “I’ve been vegan since I was three years old, and at that age, me and my siblings witnessed fish being killed in a really violent and aggressive way and it was just absolutely obvious that that was something we didn’t want to participate in and we didn’t want to support.

“To me, it just seems obvious – I don’t want to cause pain to another living empathetic creature. I don’t want to take its babies away from it, I don’t want to force it to be indoors and fattened up just to be slaughtered.”

‘Absurd and barbaric’

He added that the way animals are treated within the industrial agricultural food system is ‘absurd and barbaric’, and he ‘doesn’t know how you could witness that and not be affected by it’.

“Certainly, also, the effect that it has on our environment is devastating,” he added.

“So, for me, it’s my life and has always been my life, and it’s really one of the most important things to me.”

Maria Chiorando

Maria is a news and features writer for Plant Based News. As a former magazine editor, newspaper reporter, and features writer, her work has been published by The Guardian, The Huffington Post, and various regional newspapers, as well as Vegan Life magazine and Vegan Trade Journal. She has interviewed a huge range of people, from Prime Ministers to authors, activists, pop stars and actors, and enjoys the varied range of topics writing for PBN allows her to tackle. She was previously the editor of Plant Based News for over 3 years.