Diddy Insists Joaquin Phoenix's Rap Career Is 'For Real'

'If he's not for real, he tricked me,' says Diddy, who produced a track for Phoenix.

Joaquin Phoenix is either a visionary or a madman -- perhaps both? -- but it's hard to argue that thus far he's pulled off a brilliant feat in his head-scratching [article id="1603702"]transformation from Oscar-nominated actor to aspiring rapper[/article]. Because no one seems to know if he's for real.

Even after a Hollywood talent agency screened the film about his career makeover for savvy movie execs, opinions are split over whether the Casey Affleck-directed project is a documentary or a mockumentary. One man is fairly certain, though, that MC Joaquin is no joke. That man is Diddy, produced a track for the guy.

"Joaquin's for real," he told MTV News. "Joaquin's for real."

Seriously? Is that maybe what Diddy has to tell the press to keep up the ruse? There's just so much evidence -- the actor performing at a club in Las Vegas (and falling off the stage) and acting like [article id="1604929"]crazy man on "The Late Show With David Letterman"[/article] -- to suggest the whole thing is a "Borat"-style hoax. Not so, says Diddy.

"If he's not for real, he tricked me," Diddy said. "We went into the studio, did a record, mixed a record and everything."

We have to say, that's some compelling evidence that Phoenix's gambit is no joke. Yet the jury remains out for now. After William Morris Endeavor screened the film earlier this month, potential distributors simply didn't know what to make of the whole thing.

"Several buyers said the film overflowed with Hollywood debauchery, including more male frontal nudity than you'd find in some gay porn films and a stomach-turning sequence in which someone feuding with Phoenix defecates on the actor while he's asleep," reported the Los Angeles Times.

Tasteful! It remains to be seen whether Phoenix's musical career will be similarly surreal.

What do you think? Is Phoenix's rapping career a joke that Diddy is in on, or is he for real? Share your theories in the comments.

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