Entertainment

Jake Gyllenhaal and Maggie Gyllenhaal on Sibling Love, ‘Women Filmmaking’ and Remembering Heath Ledger

Maggie Gyllenhaal and Jake Gyllenhaal are not just related by blood anymore. This year, they’re also connected through streaming. The two siblings have both separately become members of the Netflix machine, delivering two very distinct pieces of art this year.

As director and producer, Maggie Gyllenhaal takes on the world of a woman, obsessed with the dynamic of a young mother and her daughter, which prompts early memories of her experiences in the psychological drama “The Lost Daughter.” And as actor and producer, Jake Gyllenhaal stars a police dispatcher who receives a shocking 9-1-1 call in the American remake of the Danish film, “The Guilty.” Both are for the streaming behemoth.

In separate interviews with Variety’s Awards Circuit podcast, the two discuss their own experiences working on their films and the prospect of working together in the future — with the big sister at the helm. Jake Gyllenhaal also reflects on his time working with his late co-star Heath Ledger, when they were both on the Oscar circuit for their turns as Ennis and Jack in Ang Lee’s “Brokeback Mountain” (for which Gyllenhaal won a BAFTA award). Maggie Gyllenhaal dishes about using her partner Peter Sarsgaard as her muse, and how even though many don’t agree, “there is such a thing as women filmmaking.”

Listen to the full interview with the Gyllenhaal siblings in the latest edition of Variety’s Awards Circuit Podcast below!

Maggie Gyllenhaal for Variety
Maarten de Boer for Variety

With an Oscar nomination for supporting actress opposite Jeff Bridges in “Crazy Heart” (2009), Maggie Gyllenhaal has always known she was a director. She just didn’t believe it. Now, her new film “The Lost Daughter,” an adaptation of the Elena Ferrante novel of the same name, has received rave reviews after debuting at the Telluride and Venice Film Festivals. The acclaimed emotional drama, which stars Oscar winner Olivia Colman, Dakota Johnson, Jessie Buckley and Ed Harris, has put her in the conversation for three possible Oscar nominations (for picture, director and adapted screenplay).

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Jake Gyllenhaal photographed for Variety in Los Angeles
Dan Doperalski for Variety

Meanwhile, despite astonishing performances in films like “Prisoners” (2013), “Nightcrawler” (2014) and “Nocturnal Animals” (2016), a second Oscar nomination still eludes Jake Gyllenhaal. Despite recognition from groups such as the Golden Globes, SAG and BAFTA, he has so far only mustered one swing at the Oscar bat.

But with “The Guilty,” Gyllenhaal is taking the reigns once again, delivering a visceral and intoxicating performance as Joe Baylor, a man with more problems than the wildfires that surround him in California. Under Nine Stories Productions — a New York-based production company that Gyllenhaal co-founded with Riva Marker in 2015 — he’s only getting more ambitious in his efforts.

Also, in the latest Variety Awards Circuit Roundtable, the panel discusses the new movies hitting theaters (and streaming platforms) this week, including Denis Villeneuve’s “Dune” from Warner Bros. and Wes Anderson’s “The French Dispatch” from Searchlight Pictures. We discuss their awards chances and how their runs could mimic past successes such as “Mad Max: Fury Road” or perhaps even a quirkier “Spotlight.” Finally, we wrap by discussing the late-bloomers still left in the season, including Aaron Sorkin’s “Being the Ricardos,” Guillermo del Toro’s “Nightmare Alley” and Adam McKay’s “Don’t Look Up.” Other topics include the long-awaited return of HBO’s “Succession.”

Variety’s Awards Circuit podcast is hosted by Clayton Davis, Michael Schneider, Jazz Tangcay and Jenelle Riley and is your one-stop listen for lively conversations about the best in movies. Michael Schneider is the producer and Drew Griffith edits. Each week, “Awards Circuit” features interviews with top talent and creatives; discussions and debates about awards races and industry headlines; and much, much more. Subscribe via Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Spotify or anywhere you download podcasts. New episodes post every Thursday.




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