Hi Jared! You’ve always struck me as a reasonably private person. does one hate giving interviews? No, not in the least. But if the interview’s bad, then it’s no fun, and by bad I mean routine, you know? therefore the challenge has been set!
When you were preparing to play Rayon in Dallas Buyers Club, an HIV-positive transgender woman, did you ask trans people and other people with HIV? Yeah, definitely. I talked to transgender people which was education and therefore the start of it all. I’m really grateful for those experiences.
Did you go method? I stayed in character for the whole shoot. I could not imagine doing it differently. I’d gone too far to select it up and drop it off.
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Is it True you Turned Down the Role Several Times?
Yes. I wasn’t looking to form a movie, I hadn’t made one in years and that I was starting to think maybe I’d never make another one. But they were persistent and that I thought the character was astounding.
Why did you think that you were not getting to make another film? I hadn’t even read any scripts so I do not know if there have been any interesting ones around. I used to be busy and fulfilled with Thirty Seconds to Mars.
And now you’ve got an Oscar (1)! Yes, although it isn’t a few trophy or accolades or me. It’s about having a flash to face ahead of the planet and acknowledge the people and things that mean such a lot.
You’ve manipulated your body shape for roles repeatedly (2). Does that assist you to get into character? It certainly works on behalf of me to possess a physical commitment. I enjoy the challenge of a physical role.
How much weight did you’ve got to lose for this role? I lost around 40lb [almost three stone/18kg] then I ended counting. For me, it had been about how it made me feel, how it made people treat me. I got right down to something like 114lb [about eight stone], which was enough to try to what I wanted it to try to, which was to vary everything about me.
How did it make people treat you?
It provides you with a particular amount of fragility, it changes the way you walk and talk and think and move. It changes you inside and out.
Did you and Matthew McConaughey mention you both losing such a lot weight for the film? No, I only communicated with people as Rayon, so I wasn’t talking about things like that with anyone.
Your film CV is pretty extraordinary: Requiem for a Dream, American Psycho, Panic Room. Does a movie need to be very intense so as to lure you faraway from your music career? Yeah, I might say so. I even have never been during a hurry to form a movie just to figure. I would like to be a part of things that are meaningful and rewarding.
Were you more curious about music or film as a teenager? I used to be more curious about art – I’m a conservatory dropout. But really, I just wanted to be an ingenious one that could make things, which hasn’t changed.
So you never practiced your Oscar acceptance speech ahead of the mirror as a kid? Oh no, no, no. As a child I wasn’t even watching television, I used to be surrounded by hippies during a tepee during a commune within the middle of the forest. We certainly weren’t thinking of awards shows. I’ve never pined for awards.
You had a turbulent time growing up and you said once that the purpose once you began to turn your life around “involved a gun and a few cocaines”. What was that about? I feel I used to be trying to mention how there are those moments that affect your life instead of stepping into the small print surrounding it which will sound sensational. I feel we all have moments in our lives once we have epiphanies that force us to act and propel us in directions.
Your first big role was as Jordan Catalano in My So-Called Life (3). Was it strange to play an adolescent who had such a special experience growing up? No, it had been fine – I felt that was just what acting was so it had been interesting.
Thirty Seconds to Mars has had some high-profile battles with the record industry. Are you through with all that now? Well, it is a process. a couple of years ago we discovered that, despite having sold many records, not only were we not getting to get paid a penny [by our record company], but we were millions and many dollars in debt (4). So we discovered there was a law within the state of California, the seven-year statute, which is really called the De Havilland Law (5).
Did you ask Olivia de Havilland about your problems? Yes, I ended up meeting together with her in Paris, and that we had an exquisite time together and that I thanked her for fighting the studios some time past so I could fight them now. it had been amazing to satisfy her – she’s, like, 98 now and maybe a legend. We made a movie about our battles, called Artifact, which we just released on iTunes.
So what is the situation now with the record companies? It’s ongoing – progress, not perfection.
But are you guys making any money now? Uhh … it is a never-ending battle.
(1) Leto won his Oscar for the simplest supporting actor at this year’s ceremony.
(2) Leto lost two stone (12.7kg) to play a drug addict in Requiem for a Dream, then placed on about five stone to play Mark Chapman in Chapter 27.
(3) Jordan Catalano could lean more sexily than anyone on TV ever. Fact.
(4) Virgin Records tried to sue the band for $30m (£18m) for failing to form three of the five albums they promised to deliver during a 1999 contract.
(5) Named after the actress Olivia de Havilland, best known for enjoying Melanie in Gone with the Wind and an entire slew of Errol Flynn films, who fought the studio system in 1943.
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Tehrene is a freelance health and wellness writer for numerous publications, including Eat This, Not That!, Well+Good, and Martha Stewart Weddings. When she's not glued to her laptop, she can be found testing vegan recipes for her website, Green Being Wellness, going on walks with her dog, petting cows at farm sanctuaries, or binge-watching The Office.