Taking a cue from other unruly hip-hop stars, Joaquin Phoenix jumped into the crowd of a Miami Beach club early Thursday and confronted an audience member who was heckling him.
A disheveled Phoenix, 34, came out onstage wearing sunglasses held together by duct tape, smoking a cigarette and sporting his now trademark beard. His short performance consisted of him rapping unintelligibly while a deejay spun. He quickly became agitated and said, “We have a [double-expletive] in the audience.” Then, addressing the heckler with “I have a million bucks in the bank, what do you got?” he jumped down into the packed LIV nightclub at the Fontainebleau Miami Beach hotel.
“I saw the guy screaming at Joaquin, and Joaquin just came down,” Jorge Lledo, 30, of Miami Beach told the Associated Press. While it was not immediately clear whether the two men exchanged any blows, security guards immediately swarmed and dragged Phoenix away while the crowd chanted his name.
“I was looking for a train wreck, and in a sense I found it,” audience member Hillard Wiseheart, 30, told PEOPLE. “Ultimately, I was very disappointed. I was hoping it would last longer than 11 seconds – I am so glad we didn’t pay to see him.”
Casey Affleck, Phoenix’s brother-in-law, filmed the whole thing, of course, causing some to suspect it was all part of an act. “[Affleck’s] camera was filming the whole time, so it makes me think he has ulterior motives,” said Luis Gendron, 23, of Miami.
• Reporting by DEBI SPRINGER