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Joaquin Phoenix Is Trying To Not Be A Terrible Father Figure In A24’s ‘C’mon C’mon’ Trailer

C’mon C’mon couldn’t be more different than Joaquin Phoenix’s last movie, Joker. For one thing, there’s no scene where he dances to “Rock and Roll Part 2” or shoots Robert De Niro in the head… probably. Also, C’mon C’mon isn’t a superhero blockbuster; it’s a black-and-white indie drama about a normal guy from writer and director Mike Mills, the Oscar-nominated screenwriter of 20th Century Women and Beginners.

C’mon C’mon follows Johnny (Phoenix) and his young nephew (Woody Norman), who “forge a tenuous but transformational relationship when they are unexpectedly thrown together in this delicate and deeply moving story about the connections between adults and children, the past and the future,” according to A24’s official plot summary.

Mills told the Los Angeles Times that Phoenix didn’t want to follow up Joker with another dark and gritty role. ”That was a super conscious [choice],” Mills says. “Joaquin is smart. He knew what a 180 this would be, and that was on my side.” He also described their working relationship. “It was so collaborative and fun,” Mills said. “Joaquin just made it less predictable and less me trying to make sure I come off good. He’s really good at smelling that kind of virtue signaling in different ways.”

C’mon C’mon opens in select theaters on November 19.