Jared Leto Wanted to Dress as 'Dallas Buyers Club' Character for Oscars — Please, No
Imagine, for a moment — if you will — the following scenario. It's Oscar night 2014, and the award for Best Supporting Actor is upon us. Anne Hathaway is on stage, acting decidedly unHathawayan — nary a lip quiver or jazz handed entrance in sight — on the verge of announcing the winner. And it's...Rayon, the completely made-up character from Dallas Buyers Club that was not based on anyone in real person (on which the film is based) Ron Woodroof's life? Record scratch, silence: say what? Is that really Jared Leto dressed in drag as Rayon? According to a new interview with the actor Jared Leto, that was exactly his original plan. Good grief.
I think it's safe for me to speak for all of us when I say: thank GOODNESS that didn't happen, right? That would've been terrible, exploitative, and a total disservice to Leto's performance. In an interview with The London Evening Standard's Deluxe ES Magazine, Leto is quoted as saying that he considered "dragging up because I knew that she [Rayon] would have loved to be there."
Which, OK, FIRST OF ALL: "dragging up?" Last time I checked the character Rayon was transgendered, not a drag queen, so if you were going to dress as her for the Oscars, I'm not sure "dragging up" is really the most appropriate of terminologies. Maybe not all that sensitive to the community at large. Second of all, Rayon is — and let me repeat this so it is quite clear — NOT a real person. Ron Woodroof (a.k.a. Matthew McConaughey's role) was a real person. There was, as far as all sources reveal, not a Rayon-like character in Ron's life. So, really, Rayon was a complete fabrication. And a very good one that Leto did wonders portraying.
...But dressing up as the fake character to go to a fancy and self-serving awards show in order to accept your prize for "dragging up" as you oh-so-eloquently put it? Ahh, yeah: might've maybe/kinda/sorta detracted a lot from the poignancy of the role if you decided to then parade said character around as a novelty. So, yeah: kudos for not doing that, Leto — it probably would've made everyone groan and immediately regret you having won the award in the first place.