Jared Leto Temporarily Blinded Himself While Filming 'Blade Runner 2049'

Saturday, 09 September 2017 - 12:50PM
Blade Runner
Blade Runner 2049
Saturday, 09 September 2017 - 12:50PM
Jared Leto Temporarily Blinded Himself While Filming 'Blade Runner 2049'
Warner Bros.
Anyone who's heard about Jared Leto's method acting knows that he does things less tastefully than other Oscar winners like Daniel Day-Lewis. The live rats and other weird gifts Leto sent his Suicide Squad cast mates to get into his Joker character (who barely appeared in the movie) should give you a good idea.

And according to Blade Runner 2049 director Denis Villeneuve, Leto's been method acting again while cameras were shut off. All to get into his character of Niander Wallace: the blind, replicant-building businessman and likely villain of the new sequel. And instead of embracing the "businessman" angle of his role, he's leaned more into the "blind" part by ordering opaque contact lenses which he wore on set.

Speaking to the Wall Street Journal, Villeneuve (known for Arrival and Sicario), described the apparently magical experience of witnessing Leto walk around in non-functioning contacts, even comparing him to Jesus (which is perhaps the last thing that Leto's ego needs):

Opening quote
"He entered the room, and he could not see at all. He was walking with an assistant, very slowly. It was like seeing Jesus walking into a temple. Everybody became super silent, and there was a kind of sacred moment. Everyone was in awe. It was so beautiful and powerful - I was moved to tears. And that was just a camera test!"
Closing quote


Despite wearing these opaque contacts for the entire shoot, Leto insists this was a low-key thing for him to do, which frankly is probably true. At the very least, he acknowledged that he sometimes goes overboard, and didn't want to this time - maybe Viola Davis' threat to pepper-spray him during Suicide Squad calmed him down. So he settled for self-imposed blindness:

Opening quote
"I didn't dive as deep down the rabbit hole as maybe I've done before, but I stayed really focused. I'm crazy, but I'm not insane."
Closing quote


It's easy to call Leto's blind stunt unnecessary, because it does sound completely unnecessary; we haven't heard about Ryan Gosling arresting real robots like Pepper, or Dave Bautista doing robot stuff around the set to get into his replicant character (the trailers seem pretty blunt about Bautista being a replicant).

But so long as nobody wants to mace Leto this time around, solid-colored contact lenses seem like a pretty tame alternative. 

And to be fair, Leto does a pretty good job in the recent prequel short-film that focused on Niander Wallace. After all, he did win an Oscar for Dallas Buyers Club, so he can certainly act, even if he sometimes gives us things like his Joker performance. Here's hoping those contacts pay off.  



Blade Runner 2049 hits theaters October 6, 2017.
Science Fiction
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Blade Runner
Blade Runner 2049
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