Gordon-Levitt has high hopes for impact of Snowden

Joseph Gordon-Levitt says he's curious to see what kind of impact the film will have on security laws.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Edward Snowden in Snowden. Courtesy Endgame Entertainment
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Joseph Gordon-Levitt has big expectations for the impact of Snowden.

The 34-year-old actor wrapped filming earlier this month on the Oliver Stone thriller about former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden, whose 2013 leaks to the media revealed the US government’s bulk collection of American calling records. Congress is set for an unusual weekend session to debate the records collection and two other surveillance laws.

“The laws are all in flux. I’m really curious what’s going to happen. And I love the idea that we made the movie when we did, so that it can participate in that conversation,” says Gordon-Levitt.

He noted a May 7 federal appeals court ruling that the NSA’s actions were illegal.

“Hopefully, there will probably be a supreme court case about it at some point soon. And while the supreme court judges aren’t supposed to really listen to popular opinion, they do,” he says. Gordon-Levitt plays Snowden in Stone’s film, which is based on two books about the leaks and also features Shailene Woodley, Zachary Quinto and Melissa Leo.

Snowden is out in December.

“I think it’s really important for us to all talk about it and to talk about different sides,” Gordon-Levitt says. “You don’t really get much in the American media that explores why he did what he did, why the government could potentially be doing something wrong.”

Snowden, who is living in Russia, was also the subject of Laura Poitras's HBO documentary Citizenfour, which won an Academy Award in February. Gordon-Levitt declined to say whether he'd been in contact with Snowden.

The actor made his remarks while promoting his crowd-sourced variety show HitRecord on TV, which launches its second season on June 12.