Joseph Gordon-Levitt: Can he be a leading man?

Joseph Gordon-Levitt conquered the indie-film world with such films like Brick and The Lookout, and really caught the eyes of the rest of Hollywood when he played Tom Hanson, the hopeless romantic leading man in the hit film 500 Days of Summer. But, after not many people rushed out to see Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s recent film, Premium Rush, as it only took in about 6 million dollars, Gordon-Levitt is on the box-office seesaw. (I made that term up…don’t steal it…looking at you Wikipedia.) Does Gordon-Levitt really have what it take to be a leading man and bring in the dough, or is he destined to be a supporting character until he bids farewell?

Gordon-Levitt has obviously brought in the big bucks as part of an ensemble cast, and in hugely hyped films like Inception and The Dark Knight Rises, and even G.I Joe, but to a lesser extent (way lesser extent…like Hasbro lesser.) But, when Gordon-Levitt decides to take leading man position, he fails big time, evident by Premium Rush.

Gordon-Levitt seems to succeed when he takes on leading roles in smaller movies, because that’s what made him flourish to begin with, that is what he is good at. He was fantastic in smaller movies like 50/50 and Hesher, but then again, his next upcoming film, Looper, has him playing some strange mesh-up, younger version of Bruce Willis, and judging by trailers, this one doesn’t seem to be all that amazing. Although, Gordon-Levitt’s good buddy, Rian Johnson (Brick) is behind it, so perhaps it will help the film.

In November, Levitt will also have a role in Spielberg’s highly anticipated Lincoln, which is sure to bring in a lot of people and perhaps even accolades. After that, Gordon-Levitt will take a shot at writing and directing Don Jon’s Addiction, a film in which he is also starring in, and will be one of those small films that Gordon-Levitt exceeds in.

At only 31, Gordon-Levitt has still carved out a fantastic film resume, and only time will tell if he can really become a huge box office draw on his own. For now, Gordon-Levitt should ease back into smaller films, and into roles that allows him to show everyone just what a fantastic actor he is.

Or he can always make a sequel to Angels in the Outfield (a real sequel, not that lame one with Matthew Lawrence). If he does this, everyone would be in the theaters in a heartbeat, and by everyone I mean only me.

Thanks, Joe.


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