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Joseph Gordon-Levitt explains how his late brother influenced ‘Mr. Corman’ and says he’s up for an ‘Angels in the Outfield’ reboot

Summary List PlacementJoseph Gordon-Levitt has been in front of the camera most of his life. Acting since age 4, as a kid, he starred in movies like "A River Runs Through It" and landed the lead in Disney's 1994 movie "Angels in the Outfield." But he became a star when he was cast on the hit TV sitcom "3rd Rock from the Sun." Since then he's become one of the most respected actors of his generation starring in such hits as "10 Things I Hate About You" and "Inception." But what if none of that ever happened? That's what Gordon-Levitt explores...

Joseph Gordon-Levitt in a blue shirt

Summary List Placement

Joseph Gordon-Levitt has been in front of the camera most of his life. Acting since age 4, as a kid, he starred in movies like “A River Runs Through It” and landed the lead in Disney’s 1994 movie “Angels in the Outfield.” But he became a star when he was cast on the hit TV sitcom “3rd Rock from the Sun.” Since then he’s become one of the most respected actors of his generation starring in such hits as “10 Things I Hate About You” and “Inception.”

But what if none of that ever happened?

That’s what Gordon-Levitt explores in the Apple TV+ series “Mr Corman” (premiering Friday), of which he is the creator as well as the lead actor.

Gordon-Levitt plays Josh Corman, a fifth-grade teacher in the San Fernando Valley who struggles with anxiety and thoughts of what could have been if he’d continued his career as a musician.

“I have so many things to be grateful for and when I reflect on all these things a lot of what I come back to is I got really lucky,” Gordon-Levitt told Insider on a Zoom this week. “That lead to me thinking what if certain things had gone differently?”

Gordon-Levitt talked to Insider about moving his family to New Zealand when the pandemic hit to finish making the series, how his late brother Dan influenced a part of it, and whether he would do a reboot of “Angels in the Outfield” if Disney+ came calling.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt at an electric keyboard

Jason Guerrasio: Are you in New Zealand right now?

Joseph Gordon-Levitt: I am. Very lucky to be here — feel like we won the lottery getting to be here.

How long have you been there?

We got here last fall. We were shooting “Mr. Corman” when the pandemic arrived. My producers at A24 had this idea, “Would you be open to coming to New Zealand?” I feel so lucky. I’ve got to come here and make the show and have my family be here. I’m deeply grateful to the people of New Zealand. My hat’s off to them, they beat this virus.

And hats off to your production company because it looks like the show is shot in L.A.

Yeah. It’s crazy.

What’s the biggest thing you miss from the States? What are you craving?

Hmm. Probably some Mexican food. And driving on the right side of the road. [Laughs.]

Joseph Gordon-Levitt in a purple jacket standing next to his brother Dan in a green jacket

You clearly put a lot of yourself into this show. Your brother Dan died in 2010. Did he or his death influence anything in the show?

I think he’s in kind of everything I do. There’s one episode where you see different ways life could have gone for Josh and they are represented in all these bizarre collages. In one of those Josh has died and that certainly reminded me less of my brother and more of my family’s experience going through that.

But my brother talked about gratitude all the time and Josh is someone that I think has that lesson to learn. I think he knows he has a lot to be grateful for but he’s not always able to tune into that and that lesson was something I think my brother was very focused on. That’s something I admired about him.

Joseph Gordon Levitt and Danny Glover in Angels baseball uniforms

Disney+ is doing all these reboots: “Turner & Hooch,” “Home Alone.” If they ever wanted to do an “Angeles in the Outfield” reboot, are you up for it?

[Laughs.] I like the idea, man. We’ll have to call up Tony Danza, Danny Glover, and by the way Matthew McConaughey, Adrien Brody, there were some good actors in that movie.

You have appeared in some way in every Rian Johnson movie. Have you two talked about a way for you to be in “Knives Out 2?”

I hope so. We stay in touch about things such as this. We’ll see.

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