Jared Leto is once again the catalyst of eyebrow raising. The 41-year-actor and singer got dolled up in drag for the cover of Candy magazine, “The First Transversal Style Magazine.”
This Terry Richardson collaboration was a promotion for Dallas Buyers Club, a film focusing on AIDS where he portrays a transsexual woman struggling with the disease.
Those in the know about Jared Leto will be unsurprised by this seemingly unordinary donning of the token pink wig and the fake boobs.
Jared Leto has come a long way from the pretty boy on My So Called Life, the sultry outcast in Requiem For a Dream, and … the sultry pretty boy outcast in Fight Club.
After his cinema heyday that resulted from his unforgettable performances in the aforementioned modern classic films, and other greats like American Psycho, Leto decided to focus on he and his brother’s band Thirty Seconds to Mars.
During this time, Leto eschewed the exploitation of his thespian fame to promote the band; He would refuse to play any venue that used his name to promote a show. He created the cover art, and conceived and directed a short film for the band’s single “From yesterday.” The film is shot entirely in China, and is inspired by Leto’s love of Chinese culture, Kurosawa films, Bertolucci’s film The Last Emperor.
Leto returned to acting in 2007 and appeared in Lord of War, where he played the sibling of a semi-true gun dealer Yuri Orlive, who was played by another real life oddball with a penchant for intense, committed performances, the incomparable Nicolas Cage. Both actors were comparatively even keel for their performances. Leto saved his cathartic juices for Chapter 27, alongside co-star Lindsay Lohan. In the film, Leto plays John Lennon’s assassin, Mark David Chapman. Indeed, this film was considered to be a stinkburger by most, but still, Leto’s performance could still pierce through the indignant mockery for some critics.
People like to make lists of the greatest actors of our time, and I wonder why Jared Leto is never on one. He never winks at the camera, and no matter who he plays, he can smile with the brightness of the sun, or breakdown at a moment's notice. He is the poor man's Leo DiCaprio, with the courage to put on a leather boustier without batting a false eyelash.