Actor Joaquin Phoenix Shares 'Profound' Experience That Turned Him Vegan

The star had a profound reaction to seeing people fishing when he was just four
The star revealed all about going vegan

Vegan actor Joaquin Phoenix has revealed why he ditched animal products four decades ago - at the tender age of four.

The passionate advocate - who works with a number of animal organizations, and recently narrated animal rights movie Dominion - spilt the information in an interview with Collider.

According to the star, seeing people on a fishing trip inspired him to stop eating animals.


He told the outlet that seeing people stun fish they had caught, by bashing them on the side of a boat, provoked a 'profound strong reaction in him'.

Phoenix added: "It felt like a real injustice. It wasn’t just me, it was my siblings, all of my siblings, except for the youngest, Summer, she wasn't born.

"My mom was pregnant with her. I don’t know how to explain it. I think it made me distrustful, and angry, and frightened of humans, humanity.

"I just thought it was such a gross abuse of power in a way. I think that during that moment we knew that we were not going to eat meat anymore.

"We said to our parents, 'why didn’t you tell us?' It's amazing. I remember my mom's face, I remember her crying. She didn’t know how to answer. It became very obvious we weren’t going to eat meat anymore."

PBN recently revealed that Phoenix will be featured in documentary Dominion


A few months later, the family ditched all animal products after Phoenix's brother said they should be using dairy.

According to the actor, his brother said: "We shouldn't be using dairy either. It’s not killing them, but..."  

Phoenix admitted he has deviated from the course though - confessing that he ate a pizza at a friend's house when he was a child. But it didn't end well.

"I ate that," Phoenix said, "but I got very sick."

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are prepared in the author's capacity and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Plant Based News itself. 

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PBN Contributor:

Maria is the Editor of Plant Based News. A former magazine editor, newspaper reporter, and features writer, her work has been published by The Guardian, The Huffington Post, and various regional newspapers. She was previously the editor of Vegan Life magazine and Vegan Trade Journal. She has interviewed a huge range of people, from Prime Ministers to authors, activists, pop stars and actors, and enjoys the varied range of topics writing for PBN allows her to tackle. You can follow her on Twitter @MariaChiorando and Instagram @mariachiorando.

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