30 Seconds to Mars frontman Jared Leto goes into this weekend’s Oscar ceremony as the frontrunner, without a doubt, to win Best Supporting Actor. His return to the big screen after a 6-year absence has been rewarding not just for Leto himself, in the Oscar-nomination he now has, but for audiences too, who have been moved by his portrayal of Rayon, the kind and empathetic light to Matthew McConaughey’s daring and reckless Ron Woodroof.
Dallas Buyers Club is based on the true life of Woodroof, a rodeo rider who becomes HIV + and decides to find his own way to get the meds he needs to survive, unapproved by the FDA, which he ends up distributing to others – with the help of Leto’s transgendered Rayon.
Here Leto speaks to me about what made him say yes to the role, and also why he loves South Africa so much – a place he fell for back in 2004 while filming Lord of War with Nicolas Cage.
Dallas Buyers Club opens in South Africa this weekend. It’s also up for Best Picture at the Oscars this Sunday.