Phoenix, who has been vegan since the age of three, has worked with the animal rights charity for decades on campaigns against wool, fishing, and dog leather among others.
Over the last 12 months, the Oscar frontrunner has been involved in multiple animal advocacy campaigns.
These include (but are not limited to) appearing on PETA billboards in New York's Times Square and on Sunset Boulevard in Los Angeles, and leading a memorial service at a National Animal Rights Day March.
He supported a major campaign by animal justice organization BeFairBeVegan, appearing at the launch event at a transit station in Toronto. In addition, he is the executive producer of The Animal People, a documentary that follows animal rights activists who were suppressed by powerful industry interests.
'Absurd and barbaric'
Speaking about animals during his Joker press tour earlier this year, he said: "I don't want to cause pain to another living, empathetic creature.
"I don't want to take [their] babies away from [them]. I don't want to force [them] to be indoors and fattened up just to be slaughtered. It is absurd and barbaric."
'A great example'
"Joaquin Phoenix never misses an opportunity to turn the spotlight away from himself and onto animals' plight and to set a great example of walking the vegan walk," PETA founder Ingrid Newkirk said in a statement sent to Plant Based News.
"PETA is proud to kick off awards season by honouring his dedication to showing everyone that when it comes to feeling fear, pain, and love, a human being is no different from a hen or a hamster."