Joaquin Phoenix recalled 'always losing' to Leonardo DiCaprio in the final callbacks for auditions in his SAG Awards acceptance speech

Frazer Harrison/Getty/Rich Fury/Getty ImagesJoaquin Phoenix, right, said he ‘always lost’ to Leonardo DiCaprio as a young actor.
  • Joaquin Phoenix won outstanding performance by a male actor in a leading role at the 2020 SAG Awards on Sunday night.
  • The “Joker” star thanked each of his fellow nominees including Leonardo DiCaprio, who was nominated for his role in “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood.”
  • He described losing out to DiCaprio as a young actor, recalling, “No actor would ever say his name.”
  • Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Joaquin Phoenix was awarded the 2020 SAG Award on Sunday night for outstanding performance by a male actor in a leading role – his first win after four previous SAG nominations.

In his acceptance speech, the “Joker” star took the time to individually praise each of his fellow nominees and their respective performances: Leonardo DiCaprio, Christian Bale, Adam Driver, and Taron Egerton.

Phoenix recalled that when he was a young actor he and his peers would always lose out on roles to the same person.

Leonardo DiCaprio Once Upon a Time in HollywoodSony PicturesDiCaprio earned an Oscar nomination, his seventh, for ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood.’

“There would always be like two other guys that I was up against, and we’d always lose to this one kid,” Phoenix said of DiCaprio, who was nominated for “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood.”

“No actor would ever say his name,” he continued. “Like every casting director would say: [whispering] ‘It’s Leonardo, it’s Leonardo.’

“You’ve been an inspiration for over 25 years to me and so many people – I thank you very, very, very much.”

Of Bale, who starred in”Ford vs Ferrari,” Phoenix said “you commit to roles in a way that I can only dream of.”

He continued: “You never turn in a bad performance. It’s infuriating. I wish you would, just one time, just suck once, OK?”

Joaquin Phoenix SAG speechPhoto/Chris PizzelloSunday night’s SAG Award was Phoenix’s first following four previous nominations.

Phoenix, who is now a four-time Oscar-nominee, told Driver he’d been watching him for the past few years and was a huge fan of his work, calling his “Marriage Story” performance “beautiful, nuanced, incredible, profound.”

Finally, Phoenix said he couldn’t to see what else Egerton did, saying his performance as Elton John in “Rocketman” was “beautiful.”

Watch the full video below:

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