Jared Leto is receiving a lot of attention for his return to the acting world in Dallas Buyers Club. His latest project sees the musician playing a transgender AIDS patient named Rayon, who is battling being a minority because of his sexuality while trying to survive a deadly disease. During the shoot Leto had to wear stockings, wigs, make up, and flashy stiletto heels. Surprisingly Leto was not worried about how he would walk in heels, but instead had concerns about what would happen when he took everything off for a very intense scene.
Without giving too much away, Leto had to suit up for a pivotal scene that saw Rayon trying to make amends with his estranged father. Leto told the Los Angeles Times, despite everything else he had to become to portray Rayon, he was most worried about how that particular scene would feel in different clothes:
“The entire film I had heels and tights and lipstick and fake eyelashes and wigs and scarves and all kinds of accouterments. I had all kinds of things happening. And I was very concerned about that scene because I knew it was incredibly important, but I also knew I didn’t have any of my armor. It was the only time in the film I dressed like a man.”
His armor is of course in reference to the colorful outfits Leto had to wear to portray Rayon. Despite not having his signature clothes on for the role, Leto seemed to tap into the soul of Rayon, as his performance went beyond the flashy outfits, and got to the heart of who and what Rayon represented.
“When I put on the suit, I was so relieved that when I walked through the bank I didn’t have to rediscover who [Rayon] was. I still moved, I still kind of glided across the floor as she would. And then when I did the first take, I blew it. It was terrible, I thought — not that actors know anything about their work.”
Leto elaborated on the experience of shooting that particular scene for Dallas Buyers Club.
“It turned out to be a really beautiful moment. You know, do all this crazy work as an actor. Some of it you don’t know why — you learn a ZZ Top song, you learn to play the guitar. But in all of that exploration, in all that great adventure … comes something beautiful.”
Jared Leto is currently nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role in Dallas Buyers Club.