In a new interview with Playboy Magazine, actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt speaks frankly about his love for and experience with marijuana, joining the ranks of former One Direction star Zayn Malik and everyone at the MTV Video Music Awards this year in coming out in support.
In an interview that ranges wildly between the struggles of being a child star, artistic process, drugs, the death of his brother, and masturbation, Gordon-Levitt, who began his career as a child actor and is best know for roles in “3rd Rock From the Sun,” “Looper,” “50/50,” and “The Dark Knight Rises,” tells the highbrow nudie mag that he uses marijuana as a creativity booster, that “When I smoke weed I’m more liable to make connections I wouldn’t otherwise make.”
Elsewhere in the interview, Gordon-Levitt remarks on how the NSA could potentially be recording the conversation, and that he uses an app to scramble and encrypt text messages and phone calls. It’s tempting to make a crack about how this kind of thing must be the connections he’s talking about, but Gordon-Levitt’s interview with the magazine is to promote his upcoming role as Edward Snowden in an Oliver Stone film, but with the recent news that he actually spent time with the exiled spy in Moscow preparing for the role, we’ll have to assume he knows what he’s talking about when it comes to privacy.
The actor admits he’s not the most well-versed user of marijuana, admitting, “I don’t pay attention to the strains that much, but I know they say sativa is more up and indica is more down. I don’t like the sleepy ones.” He thinks “marijuana is overly demonized in our culture” although “there’s definitely an addictive quality, but it’s psychological. It’s not physically addictive in the way cigarettes or alcohol are physically addictive.”
When asked to compare marijuana to acid, Gordon-Levitt replies, “Well, acid’s a lot more intense,” which is correct. He describes one memorable acid experience as “I remember having a vivid bird’s-eye view of where I was. Somehow, my vision went up above me, and not only could I see … . It wasn’t so much about myself. It was seeing a totality of how everything is all part of one thing, connected.”
It’s unclear if the actor is aware that this is an incredibly standard acid experience, to the point where if someone who had never tried acid was asked to imagine what it would feel like, they would probably say the same thing, verbatim.
Most interestingly, Gordon-Levitt speaks about smoking marijuana with Oliver Stone while working together, describing Stone as “a hilarious, fascinating dude—incredibly smart and good to hang out with.” The assertion Stone is good to hang out with seems contradicted, though, when Gordon-Levitt goes on, “But he’s also very direct. He’s not afraid to challenge you … . If I laughed at something while we were watching a movie, he would be like, ‘Why are you laughing?’ Then you have to think about it for a second and say, ‘Well, I think maybe I identify with Greta Garbo’s sick ballerina character in some manner.’ He’s always kind of nudging you.”
Everyone knows there’s nothing more fun then being intensely questioned while stoned, right?