'As Long As You'll Have Us': Joseph Gordon-Levitt Wants to Stay In COVID-Free New Zealand

Hollywood actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt has finished filming his television series in New Zealand, but he doesn't want to leave the country that has zero cases of coronavirus in its community.

"As long as you'll have us, we're delighted and grateful to be here," Gordon-Levitt told local outlet Stuff.co.nz. "I'm just really happy to be here."

The actor has been living in Wellington, the island nation's capital, with his wife Tasha McCauley and two kids since October, after having relocated to film Mr. Corman for Apple TV.

"I just about hit the roof, I thought I'd won the lottery," he said. "My wife and I had already been talking about New Zealand, just admiring how [Prime Minister] Jacinda Ardern and the whole country was handling the pandemic."

Joseph Gordon-Levitt New Zealand COVID-free Wellington coronavirus
HitRecord Co-founder & CEO Joseph Gordon-Levitt speaks onstage during TechCrunch Disrupt San Francisco 2019 at Moscone Convention Center on October 02, 2019 in San Francisco, California. Steve Jennings/Getty Images

New Zealand, which adopted an aggressive COVID-19 elimination strategy early in the pandemic, has not reported a single case of the virus in its community since February 28. However, a few cases still appear among recent returnees each day in the country's quarantine managed isolation hotels.

Last year, the country made headlines around the world for going 100 days without community transmission of the virus.

As the Delta variant continues to drive up coronavirus cases across the U.S. and other countries, life in New Zealand has largely returned to normal for its roughly 5 million residents.

Now that filming has finished, Gordon-Levitt has remained in Wellington with his family, working on his website for artists, HitRecord, and routinely visiting local cinemas. It's unclear when he intends to leave.

"I'm really enjoying it," he told Stuff.co.nz. "The people here are amazing. Not just the people I have worked with, but the people we meet and the people who have welcomed me and my family so warmly into their community."

Gordon-Levitt added: "I have felt such a warmth and such a graciousness here, that it has really been beautiful and moving."

Earlier this week, the New Zealand government confirmed that Google co-founder Larry Page, the world's sixth richest man according to Forbes, had been granted residency in the country under a category for investors. His application for residence was reportedly filed in November and approved in February.

The Global Sustainability Institute at Anglia Ruskin University released research in July that described New Zealand as the "best place to survive" the collapse of global civilization.

Newsweek reached out to Gordon-Levitt's representative for comment. This story will be updated with any response.