Belfast Telegraph

Friday 30 January 2015

Jesse Eisenberg: Therapy helps me

NEW YORK, NY - MAY 21:  Actor Jesse Eisenberg attends the "Now You See Me" New York Premiere at AMC Lincoln Square Theater on May 21, 2013 in New York City.  (Photo by Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images)
Jesse Eisenberg

Jesse Eisenberg says therapy helps him cope with the demands of the real world.

The actor is best known for his portrayal of Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg in 2010's The Social Network.

As a teenager he was anxious and turned to acting when he realised it would help him gain a social circle. He was a nervous child and acting appealed because it gave him a "solid framework" and meant he could retreat from everyday life.

He still feels like this to some extent, which is one of the reasons he sees a counsellor regularly.

"[Therapy] helps, too," he told British newspaper The Guardian, before being asked what he gets from it.

"A captive audience for an hour a week," he replied.

Although Jesse still finds acting easier than dealing with real life, it's not without its issues. He finds he takes on traits of his characters much more now, citing a recent play in which the guy he portrayed was furious most of the time. The 29-year-old star found he was angry most of the way through the play's run.

He also writes, which is his main love. Although he dreams of making that his sole career on occasions, Jesse understands it probably isn't the best idea.

"I think you need to have life experiences to write and writing on its own is very isolating. Acting forces me to socialise, which is good for me, I think," he explained.

In his latest release Now You See Me, Jesse plays a charismatic man who has a way with women. The release is about a group of illusionists who rob banks and the actor got involved for a surprising reason.

"I took the part because the character is so confident in what he does. I'd been in this play, playing a character who was so insecure and I was getting terrible stage fright. So I thought, OK, let's play someone who is so confident about what he does, and it was great! I didn't have any anxieties at all. Fantastic," he said.

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