Thursday, April 29, 2010
Fit for a Prince
Update: The LA Times has a story about Jake's move into potential franchise territory. There's some good stuff:
On a recent trip to promote the Disney adventure film, Gyllenhaal seemed wide-eyed but also amused by his career detour into blockbuster madness. He grinned at more than 4,000 fans who cheered him at a pop-culture expo called WonderCon but also kept an ironic detachment from the scene; during a question-and-answer session, a fan asked the actor what moment in history he would visit if he could turn back time (as his character in the move can do), and after a pause he answered with a straight face: "I would go back and watch my birth."
Clearly, Gyllenhaal is not taking himself or his new movie too seriously, although he gushes about the movie's dazzle, adrenaline and vintage movie-serial soul. "I actually jump out of a window and land on the back of my horse, just like in the old movie, Zorro-style," he said with the expression of a teenager who just hopped off, like, the best roller coaster ever. It's no surprise that the athletic actor, who was nominated for an Oscar for "Brokeback Mountain," finds himself going from indie-spirited work into the Comic-Con cinema zone; that's the template after the success of Johnny Depp, Robert Downey Jr., Christian Bale and Tobey Maguire in summer franchises.
Newell, who has known Gyllenhaal since he was a youngster, said the actor is ideal for the role because he has an aura of effortless charm around him and an almost boyish sense of wonder. "He puts a human heart in the middle of a movie that will absolutely need one to connect with the audience," he said.
He says his time in the desert was, on one level, really just a wardrobe experiment. "I grew up with filmmakers and I consider myself a filmmaker, sort of, but as an actor taking on a role I know that I'm just a piece of a situation. What I mean by that is you become part of the story that will be up there on the screen and that makes you want to try a really wide variety of situations. You try on a coat, you wear it for a while and you give it back. That's what acting is.... Sometimes as an actor you just want to try something on."
Or take something off :) These photos of a shirtless Jake Gyllenhaal filming a scene for Prince of Persia have made their way around the internet. But even if you've already seen them, I think they deserve a post of their own!
Found some photos of Jake at the post-WonderCon party. More of Jake and his bevy of admirers here:
Posted this in the last post, but if you haven't read this Daily Beast story on Nailed, it's definitely worth a look. Depressing but informative. In other non-uplifting news, an early and middling PoP review. Good words about Jake, at least, though some of this could be seen as faint praise:
Of the cast, Jake Gyllenhaal does an admirable job as the titular Prince Dastan. To avoid the furore that would doubtless have enveloped the film had this Persian Prince spoken in an American accent, Gyllenhaal delivers his lines in an accomplished (if equally out of place) English one. As an action hero he neither fits the type of the muscle-bound bore (like say, Sam Worthington or Gerard “charisma vacuum” Butler) nor the weedy, pretty-boy (like Orlando Bloom) and therefore manages to avoid being hateful as the film’s conventional, in-offensive protagonist figure.