Joseph Gordon-Levitt Committed To Studying Relationship Between Technology And Democracy After Spending Time With Edward Snowden

Joseph Gordon-Levitt gained worldwide notoriety when he played the role of John Blake, a detective in The Dark Knight Rises. The action takes place in the Gotham Police Department when Blake resigns from government service after he’s convinced he can fight crime in a better way by joining Batman. Even though many fans hoped that Gordon-Levitt’s character would carry on as Robin, a DC Comics superhero, in future Batman movies, the actor was not featured in the DC Extended Universe.

However, Joseph Gordon-Levitt has taken his acting skills to a new level by starring in Snowden, an Oliver Stone-directed movie based on Edward Snowden, the former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor, who irked the U.S. government by leaking government surveillance details to the press. Joseph Gordon-Levitt plays the role of Edward Snowden who, like John Blake, lost his faith in government security operations and took matters into his own hands by leaking espionage details to the press.

Edward Snowden became a whistleblower after being concerned that NSA’s PRISM program was unethical and invaded the privacy of American citizens by accessing confidential data from telephone and internet companies. Edward Snowden leaked PRISM details to the press, however, Snowden was forced to seek asylum in Russia after he was accused by the U.S. government of stealing unauthorized government records and leaking highly classified information.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt believes that Snowden did Americans a great service by exposing the government’s secret operation. Additionally, the actor firmly believes that, based on recent changes to the United States’ legal framework, Edward Snowden should be cleared of all charges. In addition, Joseph Gordon-Levitt stresses that it’s not possible to form an opinion or arrive at a suitable conclusion merely on the basis of one single movie or media story.

According to ABC, Joseph Gordon-Levitt spoke about Edward Snowden’s success in raising awareness about the use of surveillance technologies.

“Ultimately what [Snowden] cares about and what he risked his life for is people having a conversation about the way the government and this new technology interact.”

Joseph Gordon-Levitt flew to Russia to meet Edward Snowden and study the fugitive’s body movements and other personal details to assist himself in playing his on-screen character to perfection. Snowden also helped the filmmakers by providing valuable feedback to the scriptwriters.

Even though Joseph Gordon-Levitt is appreciative of the fact that technology is progressing by leaps and bounds, the actor is quick to point out the negative impact that can be caused by technological advancement. In fact, he’s curious to learn more about the interplay between technology and democracy.

Earlier, Joseph Gordon-Levitt announced he’ll be using a portion of his acting fee to fund a project designed to explore the relationship between technology and democracy. As part of the project, he’s encouraging people to submit videos that explore the concept of democracy in a digital age. Gordon-Levitt also revealed that hitRECord, his own media company, will be producing a documentary based on the videos submitted.

Snowden, the movie, will feature Shailene Woodley, who’ll be working alongside Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Lindsay Mills, Edward Snowden’s girlfriend. The Daily Mail reports that both Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Woodley were famous child actors in the past, and this movie has enabled audiences to enjoy once again these former child stars working together under the direction of Oliver Stone.

Even though he was loved as a child actor, Joseph Gordon-Levitt became a popular household name by playing the lead role in The Lookout, a crime thriller about an athletic young man whose life was disrupted after an accident that leaves him unable to recall certain things. According to Yahoo Movies, actor Chris Pratt was also trying out for the coveted lead role in The Lookout, as the role was considered a terrific opportunity for any actor looking to establish himself in Hollywood. However, the filmmakers decided to cast Joseph Gordon-Levitt in the lead role.

[Featured Image by Willy Sanjuan/AP Images]