Joaquin Phoenix and his fiancé Rooney Mara welcomed their first child, River to the world. The couple named their son after Phoenix's late brother who passed away in 1993 and was a big advocate for veganism and environmental conservation.

The happy baby news was confirmed by Russian film director Victor Kossakovy at the Zurich Film Festival. Kossakovy directed the documentary Gunda alongside Phoenix, who was the Executive Producer. Gunda, one of the featured films at the festival, is a documentary following the daily life of farm animals including a pig, two cows, and a one-legged chicken.

During the question and answer portion of the festival, Kossakovy was discussing how he and Phoenix connected when he spilled the news that Phoenix had a son. "He just had a baby... a beautiful son called River, so he cannot promote [Gunda] right now," said Kossakovy.

Kossakovy connected with Phoenix after watching his powerful Oscar acceptance speech where pleaded for people to consider switching from dairy to plant-based milk in their coffee and understanding the decisions we make as consumers affect the natural and animal world.

Rumors of Mara's pregnancy started swirling at the beginning of quarantine when she was spotted with a baby bump. Though Phoenix and Mara never confirmed, it was believed that the baby would be due this fall.

Phoenix and Mara are well known for their individual and collective devotion to fighting for animal rights and veganism, continuing the activism that brother River took on until his tragic passing in 1993. We can assume their new son will be raised with the same values and likely the same vegan diet that sustains them.

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