Is Joaquin Phoenix getting ready to be a step-dad? He may well have to start getting used to the idea if he's going to carry on dating Heather Christie, as she has a five year-old son. Joaquin arrived at the Toronto Film Festival with the 26 year-old model and actress on his arm and according to New York Daily News, the pair are now something of an item. Phoenix was attending the festival to promote his new movie role, in Paul Thomas Anderson's 'The Master,' in which he plays a thinly-veiled representation of L Ron Hubbard, the founder of The Church of Scientology.

There has been a drought of Joaquin Phoenix movies of late; he seemed to undergo a fairly public breakdown a couple of years back and the release of The Master marks his first major film role in four years. He seems to be clawing back his integrity, though and according to a source who knows him, things are looking up in his love life, too. Apparently, Joaquin and Heather started dating fairly recently: "They have been dating for quite a few months now and he asked her to join him," says the source. "It just recently got serious between them."

Heather's son Everly Bear, is from her previous relationship with the Red Hot Chili Peppers singer Anthony Kiedis. She split from Kiedis back in 2007 and apparently; Joaquin has all the makings of a fine father figure, with the source saying "Joaquin would make a great dad. He's surprisingly really great with kids."