Golden Globe-winning actor Joaquin Phoenix has denied reports that his recent attempt to become a hip-hop artist is a hoax.

The We Own the Night star announced in October he was to quit acting in order to become a rap career, and made his debut performance in a Las Vegas club last month.

Scepticism of Phoenix's intentions has increased since footage of his debut concert appeared online and has been fuelled by the revelation that actor and brother-in-law Casey Affleck was to direct a documentary on Phoenix's attempted hip-hop career.

But the Walk the Line actor says rumours that his hip-hop plans are part of a practical joke may have come from his enemies.

"There's not a hoax," Phoenix told the Associated Press news agency. "Might I be ridiculous? Might my career in music be laughable? Yeah, that's possible, but that's certainly not my intention."

The 34-year-old said he is disappointed at the poor sound quality in footage of his Nevada show and stressed the show was "much better" in the club.

"I had a lot of dudes come up and say, 'We really respect you for doing it, putting yourself out there, and going with it,'" he added.

"Because I think true hip-hop heads know that it's hard, it's going to be a hard transition, and people are going to be lining up just to make fun of me."

04/02/2009 09:23:35