River's last words (to the reporter trying to help him outside the Viper Room) were "No paparazzi, I want anonymity." His last request was not granted. The day before his cremation in Florida, a reporter broke into the funeral home, rearranged the body, and took a picture. This picture was later to be sold to the National Enquirer for $5,000. (imdb.com)
The song "River" was dedicated to him in his memory. (imdb.com)
Often drank warm soda, such as Coke or Dr. Pepper, before going on camera. (imdb.com)
took heroien long before his death which ironically he was an anti-drugs activist
was the face for many P.E.T.A adverts
steriophonics wrote a song called chris chambers about him it was released on their Traffic cd single number 1 song 3 the song cannot be found on the internet but the lyrics can!
is mentioned in Jay-z song Hollywood as one of the fallen stars
R.E.M. dedicated their album "Monster" (1994) to River.
Was of Spanish and Russian-Hungarian heritage.
Had a very close bond with Harrison Ford.
Best friend was Keanu Reeves.
Just a month before his death he had signed to star in The Basketball Diaries (1995). His role was subsequently played by Leonardo DiCaprio.
Was fluent in Spanish.
Planned to quit the movie industry after filming Dark Blood to help his dad run a restaurant.
The song "River" was dedicated to his memory.
His final performance was in Dark Blood (1993), a film which was abandoned three weeks from completion.
Mentioned by Norwegian Pop-Rocker Morten Abel in the song "River Phoenix".
He and his brother Joaquin Phoenix are the first brothers to be nominated for acting Academy Awards.
Anonymous Australian alternative rock band TISM (an acronym of This Is Serious Mum) released a song in 1995 called "(He`ll Never Be An) Ol` Man River" which dealt with celebrity deaths, specifically with the death of Phoenix and his drug habit which caused it. The main refrain of the song, which reportedly angered members of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, was "I`m on the drug that killed River Phoenix".
Ironically, despite his reputation for healthy living, Phoenix was a chain smoker. Peter Bogdanovich recalled, "He`d say about meat, `That`s not good for you, man, that`ll kill you.` And he`d be smoking a cigarette, and he`d look at it and say, `I know, man, I know.`"
Was, to the day, 7 years older than ice-skater Nicole Bobek.
Harrison Ford personally recommended him for the part of the young Indy in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989) after working with him on The Mosquito Coast (1986). Ford stated that of all the young actors who were working at the time, River was the one who looked the most like himself when he was that age.
The band FenixTX was originally called River Fenix, but due to conflicts with the rights to his name, they were forced to change their name.
In total thus far, he now has 4 nephews. Rio Everest Phoenix-Asch, born [12 June 1997], Indigo Orion Phoenix-Asch born [9 November 1999], and another boy to younger sister Liberty Phoenix, and Indiana August Affleck (May 31st, 2004) to youngest sister Summer Phoenix.
His death is listed as #16 in the top 101 events in E! Television`s 101 Most Shocking Moments in Entertainment.
Two of his nephews have been posthumously named for him. His sister Liberty Phoenix gave birth to a son named Rio Everest Phoenix. Rio is Spanish for River. His other sister Summer Phoenix gave birth to a son, Indiana Affleck. River played Indiana Jones in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989).
Is one of only three actors to have played the son of and the younger version of the same actor, by playing Harrison Ford`s son and playing young Indiana Jones. The other is Bruno Kirby, who played Richard S. Castellano`s son on "The Super" (1972), and the young Clemenza in The Godfather: Part II (1974). Logan Lerman played one of Mel Gibson`s sons in The Patriot (2000) and the younger Nick Marshall in What Women Want (2000).
Was a classmate of singer Anastacia
He was a very talented writer, songwriter, and sketch artist. Often wrote songs while he was driving to work.
Often drank warm soda, such as Coke or Dr. Pepper, before going on camera.
Claimed he had a vision of his future wife and would meet and marry her in 2002. He carried a composite sketch of what he thought she`d look like.
Collected baseball jerseys.
Died on the same day as Federico Fellini.
Rufus Wainwright`s song "Matinee Idol" is about him.
Was an involved environmentalist and bought up several hundred acres of rain forest in Costa Rica and Brazil, not to develop them, but to just keep them so they would not be cut down.
The story is apocryphal that River`s last words were supposedly (to the reporter trying to help him outside the Viper Room) were "No paparazzi, I want anonymity", although the quote has become something of an urban legend. In fact, according to witnesses (which included a nearby paparazzo), River stumbled out of the nightclub and fell hard, face-first, onto the sidewalk (experts believed he likely died at that moment) before spasming violently against the pavement for eight minutes, never having uttered a word. And while that photographer chose not to capture that moment on film, the day before Phoenix`s cremation in Florida, a reporter broke into the funeral home, rearranged the body, and took a picture. This picture was later to be sold to the National Enquirer for $5,000.
Ranked #69 on The 100 Greatest Movie Stars (2003) (TV) on Channel 4 (UK).
His parents named him River after the river of life in Hermann Hesse`s classic spiritual novel "Siddhartha"; and Jude, his middle name, after The Beatles` song "Hey, Jude."
River recorded an album the summer before his death titled `Never Odd or Even` (the title is a palindrome), which was released. A friend of his named Sasa Raphael (who worked with River on the album and played bass in River`s band Aleka`s Attic) almost succeeded in making the album available for free download on the Internet in the summer of 2000,on the anniversary of what would`ve been River`s 30th birthday, but was later sued by the estate of River Phoenix for copyright reasons.
My Own Private Idaho (1991) director (and close friend of River) Gus Van Sant published a novel in 1997 titled "Pink," which is a loosely disguised fantasy homage to his late friend. Van Sant`s movie Even Cowgirls Get the Blues (1993) includes a dedication of to River during the opening credits.
Phoenix, who`d been playing the guitar since childhood, had his own band with his sister, Rain Phoenix, called Aleka`s Attic.
Nominated for a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his work in Sidney Lumet`s Running on Empty (1988), Phoenix lost out to Kevin Kline for his performance in A Fish Called Wanda (1988). At the time of the Academy Awards ceremony in March, 1989, Kline and Phoenix were filming the movie I Love You to Death (1990). Sitting in the audience, Phoenix applauded enthusiastically when his co-star`s name was announced as the winner.
He disliked flying and traveled everywhere by car or by train.
Born in a log cabin in Oregon.
The famous Brazilian singer and song writer Milton Nascimento wrote a song called "River Phoenix" years before River`s death. Milton was quite impressed with his performance in Stand by Me (1986), and he decided to write a song in reverence of River`s talent. When he got to know about the song, he came to Brazil and spent some days in Milton Nascimento`s country home. After that first contact, they became good friends.
Ashes scattered at family`s Florida Ranch.
Listed as one of twelve "Promising New Actors of 1986" in John Willis` Screen World, Vol. 38.
His date to Johnny Depp`s club the evening he died was actress Samantha Mathis.
Was set to star in Total Eclipse (1995), the story of a young gay poet. After River died the part was given to Leonardo DiCaprio.
Natalie Merchant wrote a song, "River," which is in his memory. In addition, her song "Carnival" was inspired by him.