Jared Leto Thinks This Horror Movie Is His Worst Film, And Here's Why He's Wrong

"Morbius" star Jared Leto is an enigma. The actor first broke into mainstream consciousness in 1994 as Jordan Catalano on "My So-Called Life," and has since gone on to become an Academy Award, a Golden Globe Award, and a Screen Actors Guild Award-winning performer. Leto prides himself on being a method actor, frequently staying in character during the entire duration of film production, much to the chagrin of his fellow cast and crew. If his on-set antics weren't "terrifying" enough, his real life history of predatory behavior makes it even harder to champion his work when he does deliver a great performance. And he does get it right sometimes! "Fight Club," "American Psycho," "Requiem for a Dream," "The Little Things," and even "Panic Room" are all made better by his performances. Unfortunately, one of his very best performances is one that Leto himself views as belonging to the worst in his filmography.

During an interview in 2012, the interviewer brought up his performance in the 1998 slasher film "Urban Legend." Not only did Leto have little to say about the role, he didn't even remember appearing in it, and he's the secondary star. "​​That's so weird, I've never even heard of that movie," he told the reporter. "You're kidding, right?" they replied. Leto was, at least as he claims, not kidding, and wrote off his forgetfulness as having had "a blackout." Whether or not Leto genuinely doesn't remember making "Urban Legend" or was merely speaking nonsense in the hope of the interview going viral, it's a shame that he speaks so poorly of his sole foray into horror, because "Urban Legend" is a killer slasher that deserves more love.

The peak of the Scream slasher revival

Back in 1996, "Scream" obliterated the box office, and sparked an explosion of edgy, self-referential slasher films. Many of these titles like "Killing Mr. Griffin" and "Cherry Falls" fell into obscurity, but a few like "I Know What You Did Last Summer" and "Urban Legend" went off to develop their own franchises. 1998's "Urban Legend" told the story of a winter-coat clad slasher terrorizing a campus, killing their victims in ways depicted in classic American urban legends. The film boasted an impressive cast featuring Alicia Witt, Rebecca Gayheart, Joshua Jackson, Michael Rosenbaum, Tara Reid, Jared Leto, as well as cameos from horror icons Robert Englund and Brad Dourif. Critics were not kind to the film which currently boasts an embarrassingly low 23% on Rotten Tomatoes, but that's okay because "Urban Legend" doesn't need approval from anyone to be absolutely awesome.

The whodunit slasher boom of the 1990s got a lot of flak for being the "Scream" rip-offs they so clearly were attempting to profit off of, but Jamie Blanks' "Urban Legend" genuinely tried to do something fun and different. Our characters desperately try to make it out of the film alive, but rather than being hacked to bits with a hunting knife or shredded with a chainsaw, they all meet their demise in interesting ways. Urban legends are recreated or referenced at-length in the film, allowing audiences to be an active participant in the story line. Is he going to die by the classic "Pop Rocks and Soda Pop" combination legend? Will Bloody Mary make an appearance in the mirror? Does "Love Rollercoaster" actually include a real-life murder scream? The fun of "Urban Legend" isn't centered on figuring out who's doing the killing, but what they're going to do next.

Leto has made way worse movies than Urban Legend

For whatever reason, Jared Leto has stuck to his guns about not remembering starring in "Urban Legend," when Leto's filmography features way bigger stinkers than a silly '90s slasher movie. From a purely statistical standpoint, "Urban Legend" isn't even the worst Leto starring film from 1998, with the British period piece "Basil" serving as Leto's sole 0% Rotten Tomatoes rated film. With 60 credits to his name on IMDb, it's unlikely for every film to be a smashing success, but "Urban Legend" doesn't deserve to be forgotten about or disrespected in this way by its leading man. Remember when Leto played a former U.S. Marine who joins a yakuza family after being released from prison in "The Outsider?" Of course not, no one does, and that film was released in 2018.

As far as Leto's truly worst film, the answer will always be a matter of subjective taste. A film like "Black and White" which features Leto as a white teen becoming captivated by Harlem's hip-hop scene has aged like milk sitting out in the sun, Leto never should have taken the job of or been awarded for playing a trans woman in "Dallas Buyers Club," and of course, he's the man behind arguably the most hated interpretation of the Joker in cinematic Batman history. While it's impossible to determine what Leto's worst film actually is, it's safe to say that "Urban Legend" isn't it.