Joseph Gordon-Levitt, one of the stars of The Dark Knight Rises, is featured on the cover of the new issue of GQ magazine but instead of celebrating his achievement, JGL is lamenting the way the coverstory turned out. At issue is the magazine’s portrayal of the way his brother Daniel Levitt passed away. Upon his death, many media outlets began reporting that Daniel’s death was caused by an “alleged drug overdose” … which is how GQ explained his death in JGL’s coverstory feature. Joseph decided to post a personal message on his official Facebook profile to refute that claim and to make clear how unhappy he is that GQ chose to report and focus on his brother’s death in this feature story. Click below to read the full text of JGL’s statement.
BURNING dAN in GQ
First of all, I’d like to thank both of the Jims and everyone else at GQ for putting me on the cover of their magazine this month. That kind of exposure is a huge help to all the work I love to do, and I’m deeply appreciative. I’m writing this because I have a problem with what their article says about my brother. I’ll be honest, it really made me feel terrible. Here’s a quote:
‘…the elder Gordon-Levitt died of an alleged drug overdose in 2010. “It was an accident” is all Joe will say about that.’
Using the word “alleged” technically allows the writer to say whatever she wants. The “allegations” to which she must be referring were made by a handful of gossip websites. They are factually incorrect according to the coroner’s office and the police department. I don’t like publicly speaking about my brother’s death, but I’m making an exception to correct this irresponsible claim. By the way, while I asked the writer not to dwell on how he died, I did say quite a bit about how he lived, and how much he means to me. Dan was a brightly positive, genuinely caring, and brilliantly inspiring person, and I liked the idea of such a wide readership learning about him. My parents and I are disappointed with what the article chose to focus on regarding this sensitive subject.
It’s a real shame that GQ decided to squander the opportunity to make this coverstory feature a positive one for JGL. Of course GQ has the right to report on whatever it likes but it sounds to me that Joseph made it very clear that he and his family were not interested in media speculation on his brother’s tragic death. While I don’t honestly believe that GQ set out to intentionally hurt JGL, I do believe that they felt it was worth the risk to report on Daniel Levitt’s death even if it was something that their coverstar JGL was uncomfortable with. I fully applaud and commend Joseph Gordon-Levitt for his statement.