Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Jake Gyllenhaal, changing his life with movies

Update: My first report from the UK premiere of Cowboys and ALiens is here.

The release of Source Code on DVD has led to more interviews with Jake Gyllenhaal. I particularly like this one with Digital Journal. In it, Jake talks about far more than Source Code, mentioning politics, love and sex. Here are some extracts accompanied by photographs of Jake and Michael Pena on the End of Watch set on 8 August, courtesy of IHJ. Many thanks to Mermon for the heads up!

'Well, the making of any movie is always full of its own odd moments. When you do a serious scene where no one can't stop laughing or there is an intense moment and you are supposed to break tables and chairs, and can't get it right and you have to go and put everything back in -- that's what I love about making movies. So that's just the great fun and irony of movies -- that people are made to look like idiots! But who are extraordinary at their jobs? And you have like, these two actors in this movie, who are taking themselves way too seriously. I just wanted to give a great performance.'

'I think romance coincides with effort, so you can fall flat on your face as long as you’re making great effort in romance. Effort always comes off as romantic. If you’re someone who doesn’t cook, you make a meal. You can do anything that has a bit of vulnerability about it... Well, I’m a little bit of a workaholic, so there was a time when I was working hard in another country with just one day off. I flew back from that country to see someone for just an hour and then I flew back. I thought it was a really romantic gesture and I ended up with a whole bunch of frequent flier miles for my show of love.'

'Like if you see a man in uniform, then the movie is about war, And the movie is about a man getting to get back to the things he loves, in my opinion. I've made movies about war. So I feel like I can say that. And I've answered many, many questions about that before, you know? And how do I feel about what's happening? I still have great faith in our president. And I believe that he'll make the right choices. Look, it's complicated. We are human beings. And soldiers are human beings. They have lives. And for me, I didn't approach it like that. Because I didn't play that part. I played a guy who's in jail at the beginning of the movie. And to me, that's an interesting aspect, politically. Which is actually a domestic issue. And I didn't know that much about it, until I did research for the movie [Brothers]. I went to jails all around California, and juvenile halls. And I got involved in a writing program, as a result of doing research for this movie, with these young juveniles who write. I have relationships with some of them, and some of them have actually gone on to serve life sentences in some cases, And all of them, strangely, regardless of what has happened to them and their fate, are incredible kids. And to me, that's also an important aspect of this movie. That here's this guy who comes out of jail after he holds up a bank. And then he ultimately turns his life around. To care for two children, and to love, you know? And so it is with the thing about war, is that it outshines everything else. But to meet these kids that were in this system, where it seems impossible to redeem themselves -- my life changed, making this movie, Because of that, because of meeting those kids.'

'I mean, you make movies, and so much is about this process now. You know, selling a movie. Or making it look good for an audience, or whatever. And the special moments that happen in movies, are the lessons that every movie has. Like for everybody involved in it. And I went through a journey in the prison system. But look, I don't know how it can't change your life when you meet a kid, who the day before was sentenced to life. And whose girlfriend had to testify against him. So I don't know how you could be breathing, and not have something like that change your life. Like they get one hour outside a week, and they're fourteen years old. It's now changed to an hour a day, but it was an hour a week when I got there. That is not to say that they've done perfect things. But it is to say that it can't not change my life. And another kid with the LA Conservation Corps started telling us all these stories, And they were unreal. To me. Like hiding meth in the back of a lamp of a four wheel drive vehicle, driving over the border. And he was sixteen years old. And he told these stories like he was Homer. They were literally like tales. But he's changed his life. He's actually working now in the governor's office in Sacramento. So it's those things. It's like you look at a movie and go, yeah. It's a movie. But that's the stuff that I care about. So anyway. that's all!'

There is much more at Digital Journal.

And finally...

I'm off to London tomorrow for the start of a few days of movie glory, beginning with Cowboys and Aliens and its press conference and premiere. We're talking Harrison Ford here! I'm then going on to the Empire Big Screen event at the O2 venue. I will have internet along the way and so I'll keep in touch! There are wonders on the way...


Susan said...

Great article, Kate! Just one quibble with the writer: Jake did not make Jarhead, Zodiac, or Rendition after Prince of Persia. Isn't it funny which facts get mangled in the writing process?

You lucky dog, I hope you get to see Harrison Ford at the press conference/premier. He was my favorite actor for 33 years, but Jake showed up as Dastan and busted up that relationship permanently... I still love seeing him in the movies, especially this latest Cowboys and Aliens. He was wonderful! So was the movie!

Wet Dark and Wild said...

Hi Susan! It is a good article but that is quite a mix up!

I can't wait to see Harrison Ford toomorrow. He will be there. Seeing Indian Jones and Hans Solo! Really looking forward to seeing Cowboys and Aliens too.

I'm attending the Empire Big Screen weekend as press, which is very exciting.

Have a good evening everyone! All peaceful here :)

MrsJakobGyllenhaal said...

Thank you so much for this wonderful interview, Kate and Mermon.

Yepp, Susan, big mistake that writer made. But we'll forgive him for writing other nice stuff about Jake.

I love Jake's comment about how he flew to the US to see his love (Reese) even just for an hour. That's exactly what I have pictured him doing.

Have fun with Harrison Ford. You really have an exciting life.

mermon said...

I like that interview cause it's a bit different from previous ones.
I like that story about flying long way just for 1 hour date. Lovely and indeed very romantic. I wonder what they were doing during that time :) I may only imagine. Probably it was Reese during POP making, but who knows. I think he made only 3 films abroad - Rendition, POP and SC.
I liked that part about meeting young criminals in writing program, doing Brothers and how big influence it had on him and that he still stays in touch with some of them. Amazing. Especially that it was one small scene in jail only.
And that Jake's line I like too - "you can fall flat on your face as long as you’re making great effort in romance. Effort always comes off as romantic." - he's such a giving person, he really puts romance standard on very high level. It must be difficult to keep up with him in a relationship.

Monica said...

Brokeback Mountain was filmed in Canada!

TD said...

Harrison ford is about as great as you can get IMHO. He was my first star-love. Kate you are moving up to great things!
Jake is so sweet - and so incoherent! I'm so glad he loves the process of story telling to the extent shown by his obvious passion for the job but you gotta hope he doesn't get worse as he gets older - like most of us do - I can barely follow him these days. Of course just enjoying the view with Jake is fiiiine but he's such a nice man, I like to know what he is thinking. Unfortunately his thoughts seem to be pretty impenetrable currently! Enjoy the alien cowboys (as opposed to the gay ones we usually enjoy!)


Wet Dark and Wild said...

Hello everyone! Just met Harrison Ford! How amazing is that!! Back later after movie :)

mermon said...

Kate! It is amazing! Have fun! How is Harrison Ford seeing in private?

@Monica - thx for reminding about BBM.

Anonymous said...

Jake is "incoherent"?? Care to rephrase that?


1. (of spoken or written language) Expressed in an incomprehensible or confusing way; unclear.
2. (of a person) Unable to speak intelligibly.

Wet Dark and Wild said...

Anonymous poster - we do know what incoherent means, including the person, my friend, you're getting at. Sometimes Jake isn't clear. It's part of his charm. Try and be less snarky.

Thanks Mermon! Harrison Ford is bloody fantastic!!! So was Daniel Craig, Jon Favreau and the beautiful Olivia Wilde. But Harrison Ford... all of them signed my press conference notes!

My report on the press conference will be on Bleeding Cool soon but I'll try and put up a premiere report on MovieBrit tonight with pics! I'll do an Interlude here :)

An amazing day! I'm now at the Empire Big Screen for the next three days as press so I should be able to get some great stories. Particularly looking forward to seeing Roland Emmerich :)

I hope you all had a good day! I'm in Southwark. What a lovely part of London! Place is alive with people in bars and restaurants and pubs. Wonderful.

lillyrosesNjake said...

Hey everyone. I trust everyone is safe. Just wanted to add that parts of Jarhead was done in Mexico. I remember in a interview Jake talked about him and Peter doing bootcamp and living as roommates in Mexico and not having much to do but drinking and listening to music and fighting!

Carol said...

Wow Kate that's great you met Harrison Ford.

Hope you are having an amazing few days in London.


Wet Dark and Wild said...

Here's the first of my reports from Cowboys and Aliens tonight!

Wet Dark and Wild said...

Hi Lilly and Carol - I'm having a wonderful time! It's a real treat for me to spend some time in London like this, and with moviestars too!

MrsJakobGyllenhaal said...

Thanks for the reminder about BBM, Monica. Was Jake dating anyone while he filmed BBM? Or Jarhead?
I would assume too that it was Reese while shooting PoP, at least that was my first thought.

@TD and Anonymus: Jake has a dendency to change thoughts right in the middle of a sentence. Sometimes I read an interview and I think: "What?" Sometimes it's me not speaking English well ennough, because he uses words that don't show up in my everyday use of the language, so I have to look them up and learn something by it.
And sometimes I guess it's because we haven't been there in the situation with him, so it's hard to follow what he says.
I like your thought, TD, that he might get "worse" when he gets older. I like a bit of quirkyness in a man and Jake has a charming way to be quirky. That's why he played DD, Holden and Pilot so well.

Wow, meeting Harrison Ford, Daniel Craig and Olivia Wilde? Lucky girl you are!

Have a nice weekend everyone!

Wet Dark and Wild said...

Morning everyone! At the O2 and raring to go! Need coffee... Have a good day everyone. I'll report back!

TD said...

I'm so glad you're having such a great time mixing with the stars - pity its now raining. I can't wait to see Cowboys!
Thanx for the 'defence' earlier, too. Its no good MrsJG, I don't understand a word Jake says - but I'm going to look on the bright side and just go on in blissful ignorance!

mermon said...

Kate! I read your article about Cowboys and Aliens with a pleasure, still wait for a review of the story.
@Sasha! - As far as I know, during BBM making Jake was after breaking up with Kirsten, so alone.
About Jake's interviews - I think he speaks quite well. But it's different when you speak, intonate a line, change your thought in the middle. It's sounds OK, when you hear that. When it's written - it looks different. More chaotic. I think, that Jake is so rich and full of internal thoughts that's difficult to express them in very understandable way. He's just too intelligent and full of many things to say. :)
He's a thinker. I don't have a problem with understanding him, just sometime I have to focus harder. :)
Kate, I'm glad that it was safe enough to enjoy the evening with Harrison Ford, Daniel Craig and Olivia Wilde.

Susan said...

Mermon, I was thinking the same thing about how Jake communicates. He's very intelligent and there's a lot going on inside that brain all the time. Reporting an interviw verbatim when the conversation may have been on a "stream of consciousness" level is bound to appear a little disjointed.

I actually prefer the type of interview reporting in that Digital Journal article. It gives more of the full answers Jake provided to some specific questions and contains less rehashing of background. But the best has to be a video interview where you can see facial expressions and gestures and body language - I don't mind focusing on that at all. ;)

mermon said...

@Susan, that's fine that we together judge Jake's intelligence so high.:)
I agree with you completely. I think it depends also from an interviewer, how he transcripts the interview. How he'll get what Jake has to say and how he'll serve it to us.

Anonymous said...

I asked for rephrasing because I do not believe he's incoherent at all. Yes, he shifts thoughts but I have no issue with that. He's actually quite coherent.

Monica said...

Hope you're having a great time, wet dark.

Mrs. Jakob, I think he was with Dunst during BBM. After, they broke, but were on and off for a year.

Wet Dark and Wild said...

Hello everyoe! Good to see you as I catch up from my hotel room (missing you all!). It's lovely to hear talk of Jake.

I've had a very long day and so sorry for no post tonight. I'll try and do one tomorrow. I saw Rise of the Planets of the Apes tonight again - including the ending I missed. It was superb!

Have a good night everyone!

Wet Dark and Wild said...

I also apologise for my rubbish netbook keyboard! All the keys get stuck together...