Joseph Gordon-Levitt Gives His Blunt Opinion on His '500 Days of Summer' Character
By Antoinette Bueno
Joseph Gordon-Levitt is not a big fan of one of his most beloved movie characters.
The 37-year-old actor recently weighed in on his character Tom in 2009's 500 Days of Summer, who falls in love with a woman named Summer (played by Zooey Deschanel) after the two meet at the greeting card company where they both work, but ends up heartbroken. Summer continuously tells Tom that she doesn't believe in longterm relationships, and after the two break up, she ends up engaged to another man -- devastating Tom, who still had feelings for her.
On Monday, Gordon-Levitt replied when a fan took Tom's side on Twitter.
"Still haven’t forgiven Zooey Deschanel for what she did to Joseph Gordon-Levitt in 500 Days of Summer," the tweet reads, to which the actor wrote back, "Watch it again. It’s mostly Tom’s fault. He’s projecting. He’s not listening. He’s selfish. Luckily he grows by the end."
Watch it again. It’s mostly Tom’s fault. He’s projecting. He’s not listening. He’s selfish. Luckily he grows by the end. https://t.co/lEJ8uXlpJw
This isn't the first time Gordon-Levitt has spoken about his dislike for the character, despite being universally praised for his performance. In a 2012 interview with Playboy, he pointed out Tom's faults -- mainly that he refused to lower his expectations of his relationship with manic pixie dream girl Summer, even though she was consistently blunt with him about her feelings.
“The 500 Days of Summer attitude of ‘He wants you so bad’ seems attractive to some women and men, especially younger ones,” the actor said. “But I would encourage anyone who has a crush on my character to watch it again and examine how selfish he is.”
“He develops a mildly delusional obsession over a girl onto whom he projects all these fantasies,” he continued. “He thinks she’ll give his life meaning because he doesn’t care about much else going on in his life. A lot of boys and girls think their lives will have meaning if they find a partner who wants nothing else in life but them. That’s not healthy. That’s falling in love with the idea of a person, not the actual person.”
However, he did praise the change in his character's attitude at the end of the film. Tom eventually pulls himself out of depression and briefly meets a new woman, played by Minka Kelly.
“A part of the movie that’s less talked about is that once Zooey’s character dumps the guy, he builds himself up without the crutch of a fantasy relationship, and he meets a new girl,” Gordon-Levitt noted.