Joseph Gordon-Levitt talks 'Don Jon,' actors being treated like 'things'

Joseph Gordon-Levitt opens up about pornography in his upcoming film and how he gained 12 pounds to play the vain lead character.
Posted By VERONICA LINARES,  |  Sept. 24, 2013 at 4:58 PM
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Joseph Gordon-Levitt -- who directed and stars in "Don Jon," a movie about a porn addict who falls in love -- says he didn't want to make a film about pornography per se.

“I thought it was a really powerful and often funny central symbol,” he told the Star Telegram, “I wanted to tell a story about how people sometimes are treated more like things than people.”

“Maybe it was because I grew up working as an actor in TV and movies, and actors are sometimes treated more like things. But I don’t think it’s just actors -- everyone experiences this. And I was also really curious to talk about how media plays into that. So I thought a story about a relationship between a young man who watches too much pornography and a young woman who watches too many romantic Hollywood movies would be a funny way to get at this question,” he explained.

The 32-year-old actor also dished on the 12 pounds he gained to play the central character in the film. He explains he had to work out two hours a day, give up carbs and dairy and eat lots of chicken.

“Bodybuilding is not my thing,” he says. “I like to play basketball with my friends on the weekends or I’ll ride a bike for some exercise but this character is very vain. He’s very concerned with how he looks. He has a very rigid set of expectations of what a man is supposed to look like.”

Starring Gordon-Levitt and Scarlett Johansson, "Don Jon" hits theaters September 27.

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