Now that Casey Affleck has admitted that I'm Still Here was in fact a hoax, it's time for Joaquin Phoenix to dust himself off from his two-year bearded bender and become an actual actor again. Knowing that his I'm Still Here performance was fake actually proves again what a talent he is, and studios and directors are reportedly all hunting him down for roles, apparently confident that he's not in fact a drug-addled asshole, but just played one in a mockumentary.

We learned a few weeks ago that Phoenix was attached to the foot fetish comedy Big Shoe, which would be directed by Secetary's Steven Shainberg and showed major indie potential. Now Vulture is reporting, as part of a long exploration of Phoenix's career prospects, that Mia Wasikowska is set to star opposite him, presumably as a young female object of his character's foot fetish affections.

My first instinct when even imagining the young, luminous, prodigiously talented Wasikowska in proximity to Phoenix is to shield her with a coat and usher her to safety. But then, that's just my first-hand experience with the bearded, shambling, apparently fake Phoenix talking. Wasikowska has a million career options in front of her right now following the success of Alice in Wonderland and especially The Kids Are All Right, and working opposite Phoenix in a dark comedy is an intriguing and probably good choice, and definitely more buzzworthy than working with Phoenix 5 years ago would have been. The casting could change at a moment's notice, though, but I like seeing Wasikowska pursuing more and more grown-up roles, apparently determined not to let her wandering performance in the awful Alice in Wonderland define her. Whether her co-star will be defined by his wandering real-life performance is another question entirely.

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