Joseph Gordon-Levitt: My ‘500 Days Of Summer’ Character Is Kind Of A Jerk

Joseph Gordon-Levitt earned critical acclaim and the adoration of legions of heartbroken moviegoers with his portrayal of the lovelorn Tom in “500 Days of Summer,” but the star warns audiences against putting too much stock in the character.

In an interview with Playboy (warning, this link is not safe for work, obviously), Joseph Gordon-Levitt says that Tom’s dogged pursuit of Summer comes off as endearing, but in real life it would border on stalking.

“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.”

Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s Tom ignores some pretty obvious signs that Summer isn’t looking for a serious relationship, The Huffington Post points out. Still, he falls head-over-heels for his co-worker, played by Zooey Deschanel. She tells Tom that she isn’t looking for a serious relationship, but Tom doesn’t listen and when the couple breaks up he sinks into a deep depression.

“He develops a mildly delusional obsession over a girl onto whom he projects all these fantasies,” Joseph Gordon-Levitt explained. “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.”

What do you think of Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s character Tom in “500 Days of Summer”?