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Jake Gyllenhaal Talks About Heath Ledger's Death in GQ

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Jake Gyllenhaal covers the new issue of GQ. In the cover story, he touches on a variety of topics including shooting Brokeback Mountain and the death of Heath Ledger.

Jakeg2 Of Brokeback he says: “There was something magical in that time. We all slept in our trailers out by a trailer park in the first month of making that movie. I was sleeping next to Ang’s trailer; Ang’s trailer was next to Heath and Michelle’s trailer—they’d kind of moved in together. And Michael Hausman, the producer, brought his Airstream trailer down. And it was just us, by this river, for a month. And we would walk to set, and we would eat together, and we would make coffee in the morning, and I would wake up in the morning and there would be Ang Lee doing Tai Chi outside of my trailer, and it was just magical.” 

On Ledger: "I don’t really like talking about it. That period of time was…it was difficult. He was very sensitive. He didn’t always have a sense of performance in his everyday life. He knew who he was. I think actors very often, they know how to present something, and that’s part of their job. I think he was just really sensitive. We often used to do a lot of things together, because people were very interested in him and I think we felt safe together. Even when we did Brokeback and stuff, it was like my work was the only thing that mattered to me. It was like I could only understand or define myself through doing that. Life, I didn’t totally understand. And I think I was afraid of life. And I had success in my work, enough success that you could keep going back there. But after that happened…I think I recognized that it was work. And I recognized that this is for real."

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  1. In the same interview Jake also states that "I think it’s important for every man to find the right woman and every woman to find the right man." It really disgusts me that a closeted gay man who made his name from a movie like Brokeback Mountain is saying things like this to "prove" he is straight. Yes, I know politicians can do more damage, legislation-wise, but really, in its own way isn't this just as harmful as closeted gay politicians who spout homophobic nonsense?

    One thing is for sure, I'm not going to be spending any of my gay dollars on Prince of Persia. I used to be such a huge fan of his too.

    Read more: http://justjared.buzznet.com/#ixzz0l07rx8ei

    Posted by: Clem | Apr 13, 2010 1:24:40 PM


  2. @Clem

    He's no Brad Pitt that's for sure.

    Pitt's always careful to use gender-neutral language when talking about love as an abstract concept.

    And, yeah, Gyllenhaal gave a very "Ricky Martin" to a simple question about being single. It is defensive for no particular reason and suggests he has something to hide.

    Posted by: John | Apr 13, 2010 1:35:18 PM


  3. "Yes, I know politicians can do more damage, legislation-wise, but really, in its own way isn't this just as harmful as closeted gay politicians who spout homophobic nonsense? "

    No, it's not.

    Posted by: Zach | Apr 13, 2010 1:35:59 PM


  4. Jake didn't make any homophobic comments in the article. He made some vague comments about his dating life and probably over-explained, but I saw no homophobia in his answer.

    Posted by: Laurie | Apr 13, 2010 1:42:15 PM


  5. He could have made it just about himself, or said the most important thing is love. Instead he had to make it a blanket statement about all men and all women. Like John said above, he seems to be doing it to hide. As is often the case when someone hides in the closet, they go out of their way to sound straight, and often come off sounding homophobic in the process.

    Better a homophobe than gay. Too bad his friend Rufus didn't single out Jake instead of that other self-loathing closet case, 50 Cent.

    Posted by: Clem | Apr 13, 2010 2:13:06 PM


  6. Over-reaction. I can't fault anyone in such a heterosexist society who falls vaguely back on men should find the right women, etc., without going into detail about how gay men should of course find the other right gay man, and lesbian women should naturally find the perfect lesbian girl, and transgender male to female should find the right woman who's cool with that, and trans female to male should find the perfect girl who blah blah blah. It would take too long, no?

    Sure, anyone could think more carefully and say "everyone should find their perfect match, whatever gender that may be" but I'll cut them some slack if they don't.

    Meanwhile, Jake is still dreamy and I'll go see any movie he's in that doesn't completely suck.

    Posted by: Zlick | Apr 13, 2010 2:15:38 PM


  7. Sorry but there is sure some overreaction going on in this thread. As if some of you have slept with Jake or something to know what his sexuality is.

    Jake didn't say anything homophobic or harmful to the gay community. So if he chooses to use those words he is allowed to do so. He allowed to answer the question the way he wants to answer it even if it isn't a perfect answer for everyone.

    Posted by: Sam | Apr 13, 2010 2:23:57 PM


  8. What makes y'all think Jake is gay?

    Posted by: David Ehrenstein | Apr 13, 2010 2:35:29 PM


  9. Give the man a break, its got to be very hard living under a microscope, every move or statement you make is criticized. If he is or isn't, to come out would spell the death knell as a romantic lead. Sadly not everyone's heroic enough to be the first. "Brokeback" was a magic moment in film history. I for one will never forget it.

    Posted by: Rob West | Apr 13, 2010 2:47:13 PM


  10. Some of you have convinced yourselves that Jake is gay, and since he hasn't come out, is therefore some kind of insult to your gay sensibilities.

    Put down the pitchforks.

    Jake is not Anderson Cooper. There's virtually no evidence whatsoever -- let alone is it common knowledge -- that he is dating guys or has a secret boyfriend. He's coy sometimes but he hasn't tried to be ambiguous. He has answered the question.

    Seems very reasonable that a straight person who spends most of his time around straight people, and is speaking of finding one's soulmate in general, might use the first expression that comes to mind by default. If I was speaking to another gay guy I'd probably use the term "partner" or "husband" -- does that mean I have anything against lesbians or straight people? Of course not.

    Just think about it. Would a guy who's trying to keep his homosexuality on the down-low opt to co-star in a movie like Brokeback Mountain and then gratefully accept acknowledgment from LGBT-friendly media in award shows and appearances? Most actors would never have put themselves in that position, and would have been terrified to have Brokeback love scenes in their professional dossier.

    Posted by: sparks | Apr 13, 2010 5:20:09 PM


  11. "What makes y'all think Jake is gay?"

    Jake's bearding, faking relationships with women.

    Posted by: Ricky | Apr 13, 2010 6:14:29 PM


  12. I totally agree with you, Sparks.

    Ricky, your comment is ridiculous unless you have slept with Jake and I doubt that you have.

    Posted by: Ed | Apr 13, 2010 6:39:30 PM


  13. I think some of you will be surprised when he's outed or the rumors start more in earnest. He's covered himself pretty well to date, but that can only last so long.

    Posted by: Paul R | Apr 13, 2010 7:51:20 PM


  14. Um, Paul R. have you been in Jake's bed or seen anyone in Jake's bed because otherwise you know nothing like the rest of us. And Jake has been "outed" a million times already.

    Posted by: Ed | Apr 13, 2010 9:54:20 PM


  15. For Jake buffs some of you have mighty short memories. This is an old quote he did about two/three years ago, and it caused raised eyebrows then. They just rehash these things for interviews, where their PR agents sit in with them.

    Yes Jake is a closeted man. And I don't have to go into vast detail how I know. It wouldn't matter if the guy showed up on your doorstep having full sex with a man you'd still demand 'proof' of gayness. Of course modern actors stay closeted. THEY STILL HAVE A LOT TO LOSE. If you visit Towleroad then open your eyes and take a look at how hard life is made for ORDINARY gays in smallsville etc, the prejudice and unfairness is everywhere. Actors are advised NOT to come out while ever they ave product to sell, and when that's a DISNEY/A-list product tat is gonna make a studio a LOT of money potentially, then you keep your trap shut about fancying men. I cannot believe some of you cannot grasp this simple concept.

    Posted by: Eoin M | Apr 14, 2010 5:23:47 AM


  16. "Umm" Ed, these days you can 'out' anyone without much repercussion if it's just perceived as internet gossip or a blind item.

    Try outing someone with serious evidence, which there is, hidden, on many actors/actresses. That's what they fear getting out; files and picture evidence sat in safes and locked rooms that change hands for big sums of money. And people that get paid off not to talk. Those are the real threats that almost never surface because someone makes sure they don't!

    Posted by: Eoin M | Apr 14, 2010 5:28:28 AM


  17. Eoin M, don't speak for me or how I feel about anything let alone Jake being gay or not. I would be happy if Jake came out as gay and I am happy now with what I know about him from interviews, pics, etc. If he was having sex with a man in front of me then yes I would believe he is gay. However, I have no proof of anything and I am sorry but I don't believe that you have any proof either. You are just some random person on the internet.

    Posted by: Ed | Apr 14, 2010 12:28:32 PM


  18. I don't see any reason to 'OUT' anyone who is 'Gay Friendly', but prefers to keep his personal life out of the press. That's not saying I believe Jake is Gay. The man has a career and a personal life, and he is the only one who can make decisions that affect either one.

    We all know that Hollywood can be devastatingly homophobic. And the press can exploit any perceived flaw in the character of a celebrity. Sadly, fans who adore a celebrity can be just as invasive and inflict just as much pain as people who intend to slander and destroy the life of that celebrity. Even public figures have a right to a private life behind closed doors. What they do in public may be considered fair game for the rumour mills. But let's not pry open those doors.

    Posted by: Jay Croce | May 3, 2010 2:54:40 AM


  19. I honestly doubt Jake is gay. He clearly states that this is work, and although of course you would make a connection with your cast members, but I sense nothing more than just that. He is an incredible actor and I think exploring this role for him was an extremely talented move, and showed a great deal of sensitivity on his part. I saw that passion appear not only in his acting with Heath Ledger, but also with actresses. It just shows to me that he is doing his job to his best ability. It was expected that speculations of his sexuality would bubble up from such a unexpected career choice, and honestly I'm proud that he took such a jump in another direction to support his career.

    Posted by: Elizabeth | Sep 25, 2011 10:29:07 AM


  20. Would that Jake were Gay!

    Posted by: amit | Oct 11, 2011 5:13:01 AM


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