Joaquin Phoenix and Rooney Mara can now add the role of "parent" to their already impressive resumes. The pair reportedly welcomed their first child last month, a son named after Phoenix's late brother, River.
While the notoriously private couple, who have been dating since 2016 and got engaged in May 2019, have yet to confirm the good news themselves, director Victor Kossakovsky spilled the beans over the weekend at the 2020 Zurich Film Festival while promoting their film Gunda, which Phoenix executive produced.
“He just got a baby, by the way, his name was … a beautiful son called River, so he cannot promote it now,” he explained referring to Phoenix's absence.
River died in 1993 at the age of 23 of a drug overdose at the height of his career; he starred in the films Stand By Me, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade and Gus Van Sant's My Own Private Idaho.
"I feel like in virtually every movie that I made, there was a connection to River in some way. And I think that we've all felt his presence and guidance in our lives in numerous ways," he said.
Us Weekly broke the news that Mara, 35, and the Joker star, 45, were expecting their first child. Though the couple never acknowledged the pregnancy, the Carol actress was spotted out and about sporting a baby bump.
However, when the Girl With the Dragon Tattoo star was recently spotted last week, she was without a bump.
The couple lives in the Hollywood Hills with their two dogs, Soda and Oskar, and avoids the Hollywood nightclub circuit. “They don’t really like to go out,” an insider told Us of the private pair at the time. “They mainly just like to be with each other as the two of them. They’re in their own bubble.”
However, Phoenix gushed about his Mary Magdalene co-star in October 2019.
“She’s the only girl I ever looked up on the Internet,” he told Vanity Fair. “We were just friends, email friends. I’d never done that. Never looked a girl up online.”
One month prior, the Gladiator actor shared a unique nickname for his fiancée while accepting his People’s Choice Award at the Toronto International Film Festival. “One last thing, somewhere here, I don’t know where, is a filthy dragon, and I want to rip its wings off and fasten a blanket and sleep with it forever," he said in his September 2019 speech. "I love you. Thank you.”
Phoenix, who won an Oscar in 2020, has previously dated actress Liv Tyler from 1995-1998 and model Topaz Page-Green from 2001-2005.