We have deep emotional ties to Michael B. Jordan thanks to his mastery of troubled TV characters with hearts of gold. See: Vince on Friday Night Lights, Wallace on The Wire, and Alex on Parenthood.
In person, we learned 25-year-old Michael a) looks wonderful in a leather jacket and b) is about to be a huge movie star, with a leading man role in the upcoming Sundance Film Festival flick Fruitvale. Also, lucky for everyone, he is somehow single and hasn't had a girlfriend since he was 18.
Cosmo: So, you arrived by yourself. No entourage!
Michael: Nobody's mobbing me outside. I just get a few people—old white ladies or random little girls. The little girls be like, "I love you on The Wire!," and I'm like, "Why would you even know me from The Wire?!" It doesn't bother me, though. When I've seen the people who had influence on me, I was literally like, "Oh man. Wow."
Cosmo: Like who?
MBJ: I met Ryan Gosling one time and it was so cheesy. I was like, "Um, I'm an actor…and you're an, um, actor, and I think you're awesome, and I kinda made my career after you a little bit?"
Cosmo: Any other role models?
MBJ: You have the usual suspects that sometimes I get annoyed at saying: Denzel, Will Smith, of course, Laurence Fishburne. But also Joseph Gordon Levitt. I'm very colorless. That's one of my biggest things. When I first started my career, I didn't want anybody to look at me as a black actor. That pisses me off. It's not about that, "You're the next Will Smith or Denzel." Why not the next Ryan Gosling?
Yes, we made a Michael B. Jordan gif.
Cosmo: You're becoming a movie star yourself with the Sundance movie Fruitvale, about Oscar Grant, who was shot by a transit police officer in Oakland, Calif. in 2009. How did you prepare?
MBJ: It's the most work I've ever put into anything. I spent a lot of time with his family, with his daughter, with his baby moms, all his best friends that were with him when he got murdered. I put on some weight, grew out my hair, and got the dialect down. Hopefully it gets the distribution that it deserves.
Cosmo: What made you want to take on this role?
MBJ: This script was like an actor's wet dream. This was kind of my first job as the lead. I'm in every scene and that's a lot of pressure, but I just wanted to make sure I took advantage of the opportunity. Since I started on television, I want to kind of branch over to the other side. I think TV will always be there waiting for me to come back whenever I decide.
Cosmo: Are you going to work with Jason Katims (FNL and Parenthood producer) again?
MBJ: I'm pretty sure we will. I write a lot and I've been developing a couple TV shows and Jason was very influential in that process. His opinion matters to me a lot.
Cosmo: Tell us about the TV show you're developing!
MBJ: I got a couple developing right now that I can't really talk about. I'll give you this-it's like a mixture of Friday Night Lights, The Wire, and Parenthood. It has the family element and the phoenix rising from the ashes. It's set in Detroit, Michigan; the guy goes to Michigan State. It's got some sports elements to it. I am going to be in it, but it's a character that I can disappear enough from if I want to go do a film. And I'm definitely not getting shot anymore, I'm over dying.
Cosmo: We have a movie idea for you. The Friday night Lights movie. Thoughts?
MBJ: I don't know if the dream will ever be dead, but I would just leave it be and go out on top. What if you roll the dice and it's a horrible movie? I'm pretty sure Jason would crush it and kill it, but if it just bombs, then what? You'll be upset, you'll be mad, you'll be let down. We don't want to let our fans down.
Cosmo: You're crushing our dreams right now. What if Jason Katims called and was like, "Hey, want to do the FNL movie?"
MBJ: If he was like, "Hey, Mike, I need you to come and play Vince again," I'd be like, "Yeah, I'll strap 'em on one more time for you." I would.
Cosmo: We also want to know if you're ever going to come back to Parenthood.
MBJ: I don't think I want to come back to TV unless it's something I have a little more control over. Or if they want me to do an arc on Boardwalk (Empire) or Homeland, I'd do that! I wouldn't mind going on Mad Men. Or Girls. I'd definitely do Girls.
Cosmo: Lena Dunham, call this guy.
Get em boo.