Joseph Gordon-Levitt is the Benevolent Dictator of HITRECORD

TCA2014: Variety show isn’t quite a democracy, he says

Joseph Gordon-Levitt‘s new “HITRECORD” is a variety show made up partly of clips posted online — but don’t call it crowd-sourced.

Crowd-sourcing, he says, reminds him of marketing gimmicks where Mountain Dew asks for consumers’ supposed help choosing a new can. “HITRECORD” will be curated by fans who help choose the best entries. But he’ll choose his favorites based on those getting raves on the HITRECORD website.

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“It’s not exactly democratic. We call it more of a benevolent dictatorship,” Gordon-Levitt said at the Television Critics Association winter press tour Saturday.

The show is perfectly suited to his diverse interests. He stars in action dramas like “The Dark Knight Rises,” writes and directs thoughtful comedies like “Don John,” and sings Christmas songs on Lady Gaga’s Muppets special. HITRECORD, he said, allows him to focus on all his interests at once.

See video: Joseph Gordon-Levitt Is Back on TV With ‘HITRECORD,’ Watch Entire First Episode

Though HITRECORD airs on Pivot, a network that targets a young audience, Gordon-Levitt said he has paid zero attention to demographics.

“We haven’t really spent any amount of time thinking about, ‘What do the kids want?’” he joked.

HITRECORD will showcase performers of all kinds — but not all of the talent will be on the screen. Gordon-Levitt said that helping find the best videos sent to the site is also an artistic endeavor, akin to being a curator or DJ.

Also read: Pivot’s Evan Shapiro: The TV Exec Who Wants to Slow Down America

“Thousands of new things come in every day – what are the things that are going to pop out?” he said. “Just being on the site and contributing your opinions is really indispensible. … Having an opinion or having taste is an art form like any other.”

The show premieres Jan. 18, but Pivot has released it early online, where it’s already been viewed 500,000 times.