Two days ago saw the anniversary of the deaths of two Seattle grunge rock icons, Kurt Cobain of Nirvana (suicide, 1994) and Layne Staley of Alice In Chains (heroin and cocaine overdose, 2002). And while most people quietly celebrated their lives and contributions to music by popping in their favorite Nirvana or AIC CDs, 30 Second To Mars musician/actor Jared Leto decided to pay tribute to Cobain by releasing an audition tape he crafted a while back in which he performs acoustically in character as Cobain. He had this to say about it on his blog…
“I heard today was the day Kurt passed away 17 years ago. Can’t believe it’s been that long. So grateful for his contribution and inspiration. Not sure I’d be doing this if it weren’t for him. He gave us all permission to create no matter what our skill set and reminded me that dreams are possible. Thanks for that. This made me recall a short piece of film I shot when I heard they were making a film celebrating his life. I made it to explore the character and explore creative possibilities. I never sent it to the studio or to anyone but thought I’d share it now…” [via JaredLeto.com]
The clip is below, and I can’t help but believe that, as far as Leto’s motives go, a genuine appreciation for Cobain and his music is slightly outweighed by a shameless use of the anniversary of Cobain’s death as an opportunity to garner buzz and support for him to win the role of Cobain in the biopic that Courtney Love has been planning for years (although, this may have also been Leto’s audition tape for Gus Van Zant’s 2005 fictionalized Cobain film Last Days). And while I’m tempted to encourage Jared Leto to act out the final, shotgun-tastic moments of Cobain’s life as an encore to this tacky “tribute,” he kinda won me over with his portrayal. And this may actually prove him to be just tasteless enough to play Cobain, because really, what’s more tasteless than leaving behind a baby, wife, and successful career by offing yourself? Speaking of wife, I’m sure Leto can be expecting a call from her army of drooling attorneys any minute now.