EW Staff
June 25, 2004 AT 04:00 AM EDT

AGE 36
MUSTWORTHINESS In just one month this spring, he wowed us with his versatility, starring as a memory-erasing techie in ”Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” and a lovesick pup in ”13 Going on 30.” This summer, he plays good cop to Tom Cruise’s hitman in ”Collateral”, then dabbles in adultery in ”We Don’t Live Here Anymore,” an indie drama that he exec-produced. He has also stayed active in Page 93, the L.A. theater company he cofounded in 2000. All this less than three years after recovering from a brain tumor (a matter he prefers not to discuss).
ON HIS MUST LIST Javier Bardem. ”He’s one of the most exciting actors around today, certainly of my generation.”
CAREER HIGH Right now. ”All this work that’s coming out at the same time it’s mind-boggling…. I’ve always been a little scared: Am I doing the right thing by not going for such high-profile things and following my heart? You never know what’s going to pay off in the long run. So now, I’m just thrilled.”
WORST JOB ”Oh, man, stringing guitars for a born-again Christian fanatic back in the ’80s in L.A. He had no tolerance for anyone else’s beliefs. I was there for like two years. It was an awful, awful job.”
NEXT ”Sympathy for Delicious,” a film about a paraplegic Ruffalo has been developing since 1999 with his friend Christopher Thornton (himself a paraplegic). ”The character’s basically like a selfish son of a bitch [who] gets the gift to heal, and he can’t heal himself.”

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