Tuesday, September 25, 2012
More Heinz Tomato
Catch up, that is. Too much to organize, too little time. Forgive another inelegant hodgepodge post.
Jake and Michael interviewed by Ben Lyons: Don't talk about my mom like that!
The whole gang:
USA Today published a wonderful profile of Jake. They interviewed him back in New York after the L.A. premiere of End of Watch. Some snippets:
"So is Gyllenhaal anything like his character, a man both brashly confident and sweetly true-blue?
Pena says what's most endearing about Gyllenhaal is how family-oriented he is, and how much he adores his mother, screenwriter Naomi Foner, and sister, Maggie. And how he's willing to help everyone be on their A-game, including Pena -- who admittedly was out of shape before shooting started.
"He's a complicated dude, to be honest. He's really, really smart. He can be goofy at times, but his mind is always going, going, going," says Pena. "He goes on these epic jogs. He called me up and said, 'Let's go for a run.' And there's paparazzi shots of us. He's running all stealth and all you see is me dying. Meanwhile, Jake is like, 'Whatever.' "
Not exactly. Those who know the actor praise his dedication, and his unwillingness to cut corners. During the Watch shoot, Pena recalls how Gyllenhaal would step in and help him navigate difficult scenes. "Good things happen to those who are in movies with Jake. He's proud of that fact. He's pretty selfless in that regard, and he wants you to kill it," says Pena. "There were a couple of times I wasn't doing very well, he'd pull me aside and tell me, 'Dude, do you remember that thing you did in rehearsal? Do that.' His motivation comes from a good place." ...
Gyllenhaal isn't the first name on the poster promoting the play. Nor does he view himself as the star of it. "He chose a really interesting ensemble play," says director Michael Longhurst. "He's obsessive about making this production as good as it can be."
His character, says Gyllenhaal, is "thinking and doesn't say what he thinks and he feels the thoughts connecting. His desperation to communicate some kind of honesty, I fell in love with that. It's a high-energy role, so it requires a tremendous amount of focus and attention. To be able to do what I love the most is the best. It gives me energy."
Yes, you want to roll your eyes at Gyllenhaal's unabashed exhilaration and all that talk about work ethic. But there's the real sense that he means every word. "Honestly, I love waking up in the morning knowing that I'll be on stage and feel like you're part of this history of storytelling. I walk home every night," he says with a smile.
"We have a new generation. My sister and I aren't the youngest ones anymore. All those things came together in my life," Gyllenhaal says. "It's really cool to see my niece now because she really helps out. There's this video that Peter sent me the other day. My older niece was playing with my younger niece. She would turn around and surprise her, and my younger niece was so in love with her. It gave me a perspective on how much I probably felt the same way about my sister, and I do still. That stuff never goes away."
Gyllenhaal babysits, but not as much as he probably should. " I was in L.A. for the premiere, and they were all together here last night. My niece is a little sick right now because she just started school again. I felt really torn -- maybe I'm a bit of a mess, but there's this family in this movie that I didn't want to leave and I was talking to my family on the phone and thinking how much I missed them and loved them and wanted to be with them. I watched Brave on the plane on my way to Los Angeles, and all I could think about was my niece because that's her favorite movie," he says.
And if that's not enough to win you over, Gyllenhaal also is adept behind the stove and is a foodie, in the non-annoying sense. John Lesher, who produced End of Watch and became close friends with Gyllenhaal, says the actor "always knows where to get the best food and the best cup of coffee. He cooks -- I went to Seder dinner at his mom's place and he made all the food, which was spectacular. He made brisket and all kinds of stuff. He's very in touch with his Jewish side. He's always questioning everything. He's not neurotic. If he's going to do something, he's going to do it well."
He's curious and focused, adroitly discussing post-traumatic stress syndrome and the effect it has on those exposed to violence on a regular basis, like police officers. "He's interested in everything going on in the world. You're meeting Jake for dinner and then you're sitting with K'naan, this Somali poet musician. You never know with Jake where something is going. Or you're with his mom and his niece and making dinner and talking about the issues of the day. He's a very decent person, which goes a long way," says Lesher.
Jake's Vogue article. If you embiggen, you can sort of read it :)
Nice interview with Jake on opening night of If There Is:
Fan photos - haven't had these in a while!
Jake with Elliot Ross, a photographer who works with Mark Seliger. From the Details shoot: