LONDON - Joseph Gordon-Levitt might have quit show business once upon a time, but he now looks set to stay.
The hotshot actor, who has now turned director with the new movie Don Jon, is on top of his game.
Last year, he took the leading role in David Koepp's cycle-courier adrenaline-pumper Premium Rush and also appeared in The Dark Knight Rises, Steven Spielberg's Lincoln and the science-fiction thriller Looper, all of which were well received.
The year before that, he starred in the acclaimed cancer drama 50/50, which earned him a Golden Globe nomination for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Comedy or Musical.
As the director, writer and star of the well-reviewed comedy-drama Don Jon, about a porn addict, the 32-year-old appears to have reached a new professional apex.
When charting the turning points in his Hollywood career, it is tempting to cite the 2006 neo-noir Brick, or perhaps (500) Days Of Summer, the critically acclaimed 2009 comedy-drama directed by Marc Webb.
The actor, however, highlights a different moment - when he quit the business after the popular and acclaimed TV sitcom 3rd Rock From The Sun, which ran from 1996 to 2001.
"I stayed away for a few years and if I had to pick one real left-turn in my career, it was then. At that time, I was a little childish and selfish, and I was concerned only with myself and the people I cared about and didn't feel a great connection to the rest of the world at large," he says.
After 3rd Rock, the young actor moved out of his parents' house in Los Angeles' Sherman Oaks district, enrolled in college and relocated to New York, where he "got that sense of connection to community and people in the world".