This time on “A Brief Discussion…” I’ve decided to examine an actor whose star is still on the rise, and whom I’ve gotten to watch slowly climb the Hollywood ladder, as the guy is only two years older than me. That man is Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and he’s gone from being a recognizable kid on a popular TV show into a veritable Hollywood hunk within the last decade. On top of his dashing good looks and natural charms, Jo-Gord-Lev (okay, that’s the only time I’ll use that nickname…which I made up) is a damn fine actor, and his most recent turn in Inception really illustrated to me how talented this guy is. But before we start talking about Mr. Gordon-Levitt’s career, I’d like to talk about his official website: hitRECord.org…
Now THIS is a website. Rather than turn his official site into a kind of online portfolio and resume like Tom Cruise did, Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s website is what he describes as “a professional open collaborative production company” which allows people to work together on video projects, which will then be featured on the site. It’s a community, not just a showcase of his movie and TV roles, and I think it’s the best thing that an actor could do for his fans. He’s offering everyone, EVERYONE, the opportunity to work with him and create something great, and for that, Mr. Gordon-Levitt, I salute you. Celebrities everywhere could really learn something from this. Check out this awesome short film, starring Gordon-Levitt, that is currently the featured video on his site!
Joseph Gordon-Levitt (it just doesn’t feel right referring to him by anything other than his full name) doesn’t have the extensive filmography that the other actors I have featured on “A Brief Discussion…” do, but that isn’t to say that he isn’t well-known. The few major starring roles that he has had have been very memorable indeed, but the role that made him famous to begin with is still probably his best known (at the time of this writing, anyway). Joseph Gordon-Levitt played Tommy, the alien kid on 3rd Rock From the Sun. I wish I had more to say about 3rd Rock, but I don’t. It was a pretty funny show, but I wasn’t sad about its cancellation. Still, Joseph Gordon-Levitt made enough of an impression on me with his comedy work that whenever he would pop up in a movie (such as in Halloween: H20 when he got an ice skate stuck in his face), I would remark “Hey! It’s that kid from 3rd Rock!”
After 3rd Rock From the Sun got cancelled, Joseph disappeared from the public eye for a bit, taking minor roles in movies like 10 Things I Hate About You, and voicing Jim Hawkins in the Disney sci-fi movie Treasure Planet. It wasn’t until the 2005 film Brick that I really took note of him again, and man, he was just terrific in that movie. If you haven’t seen Brick, do yourself a favour and watch it, because it’s absolutely fantastic, and a lot of its greatness is because of Gordon-Levitt in the starring role. He nails the tone of a film noir perfectly with his performance as the almost-hard-boiled high school kid Brendan.
Since then, his star has been steadily rising, with Gordon-Levitt performing in both acclaimed indie movies like 500 Days of Summer and big-time blockbusters like GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra and Inception. He has exhibited a great range of acting, as he seems to be able to pull off romantic interest, military soldier, maniacal villain and slicked-back con man with incredible ease. And the man can dance! Take a look at this video that he and Zooey Deschanel filmed while shooting 500 Days of Summer to see what I mean.
And as if that wasn’t enough, he can also sing and play guitar!
Joseph Gordon-Levitt is a seriously talented guy, and he’s come a long way since 3rd Rock From the Sun. After his awesome performance in Inception, I can’t wait to see what the guy comes out with next. You keep on rocking, Mr. Gordon-Levitt, and I’ll keep watching.