On the season premiere of Running Wild with Bear Grylls, Joseph Gordon-Levitt took on the brutal African desert, where he faced physically challenging obstacles and some of Africa’s most dangerous animals.
While it was entertaining to watch the talented actor eat a nearly rotten buffalo tongue and attempt to milk a dromedary camel — who subsequently kicked him in the shin — it was the heartfelt moment in which he opened up about his late brother, Dan, that made us feel for him.
“I don’t usually like talking about my brother on TV and stuff,” Gordon-Levitt told Grylls. “But I feel like there might be some folks watching right now, who might be going through it.”
He told Grylls that what helped him most during one of the toughest moments of his life was talking to other people who had been through a similar situation and remembering that he could and would survive. “One thing I found helpful was, I would tell myself, ‘Don’t force anything and don’t resist anything,’ Gordon-Levitt said. “If you’re gonna feel sad, then go ahead and feel it. Don’t try to resist that.”
Gordon-Levitt concluded by saying, “But then there are also moments, bizarre moments, where you’re in the thick of grief and for a second you don’t feel anything. And then you can feel guilty for not feeling anything. Or there might even be moments where something strikes you funny, and you might laugh. And then you might feel guilty for that. And what I ultimately found was there’s no use feeling guilty. You shouldn’t resist anything either.”
Grylls understood where Gordon-Levitt was coming from as he opened up in return. “Lost my dad when I was pretty young. You’re right. It’s sort of, nothing prepares you, does it? And I think it’s that thing of, you don’t get over stuff. You kind of try and get through it. And it’s just hard. It’s hard, isn’t it? Life is hard. But, I think for you, that’s an especially cruel blow.”
In the end, Grylls pointed out that Gordon-Levitt was honest and open about his raw emotions — something that tends to happen in the wild, and something he loved.
Check out Charlize Theron recounting her embarrassing audition for her idol, Tom Hanks:
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