Remember all those Farragut North readings and rumours from 2007/2008? Well, now the play is cast and ready to go - not with Jake Gyllenhaal as the lead, not even with Leo DiCaprio, but with James T Kirk Chris Pine at the helm. So while we muse on what might have been, time to think on what was.
Jake first took to the boards alongside Hayden Christensen and Anna Paquin: 'Obviously, I knew all their work and have been following them both since they were very little. I personally didn't actually know either of them, though I hung around outside their houses without either of them knowing, taking weird Polaroids of their naked body parts. Besides that, nothing really, like, weird. Nothing I haven't done before with other actors I've worked with. [All laugh]'
'I was born in 1980, so I do have clear memories of the later '80s. I knew the resonance of the Reagan era in America in my family and in the house. We weren't necessarily very happy about that time. But then again, I grew up in a relatively well-off family, so it didn't affect us as much as some other families in America. Which I think is a lot of what this play is about - rich kids who are safety-netted by all this money. And even when they're in contradiction to the politics of the time, they have no, you know, where is your political standing when you've had no real struggle? How do you develop anything when...'
'...These kids aren't impoverished financially, but they are emotionally. I think a lot of times financial poverty breeds emotional poverty, but there are plenty of times where the opposite happens. And I think the play is eventually pretty com- passionate because these kids are going through horrible, horrible things and dealing with it by creating their own reality through drugs, pop culture, a way of speaking.'
The script: 'My favourite line last week was that speech I have: 'It's totally weird, like, taking all your clothes off and having sex with someone you barely know, and then being like, "What's up now?" You know? Like it's such an intense experience, but then nobody knows what to fuckin' say, even though nothing bad actually happened'. Jake's second favourite line: 'You're a fucking loser'. More here.
This Is Our Youth Jake got back to the subject of sex when interviewed with the other two for London's Metro: ''We've a Republican president, we're on the edge of recession, the divide between rich and poor is still stratospheric,' says Gyllenhaal. 'We might not be those kids but we know people like them. We might not choose to express the depth of our insecurities with drug deals but everyone remembers what it feels like to have sex for the first time.'
I'll end with a review, this one is from the Telegraph: 'But I don't want to make the piece sound excessively solemn. It is full of delicious humour, with Lonergan nailing the excruciating rites of adolescent passage. Just the sight of Warren's awkward dancing and over-eager snogging reduced me to tears of laughter and poignant recognition of my own distant youth. Laurence Boswell directs this marvellous trio of actors with both confidence and an illuminating attention to detail. Gyllenhaal seizes all his chances as Warren, a beautiful and befuddled loser. But he also movingly suggests a lovable, vulnerable character just beginning to grow into maturity.' '
'As Dennis, Christensen edgily captures all the raging solipsism of youth, and that first appalled recognition that we may not be immortal, or indeed all that special, after all, while Paquin touchingly portrays all the locquaciously defensive insecurity of teenage romance.' Anyone who has ever smoked a joint or kissed anyone will love This Is Our Youth.'
Includes pictures from IHJ, here and Desiring Hayden.