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Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

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Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Nicky80 on Mon Nov 03 2014, 20:51

Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

If you’ve followed the pre-release press for Nightcrawler – which, by the way, is one of the year’s best films — you’ve probably read about how the failure of Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time caused Jake Gyllenhaal to reevaluate his career and make “edgier” choices. That’s somewhat of an exaggeration and it’s not entirely true when you look at his entire resume (Prince of Persia was an anomaly before and after Prince of Persia), but the critical and commercial failure of Walt Disney’s $200 million video game adaptation, surely intended to the be the first in a series, obviously showed the young actor that he wasn’t entirely at home in a conventional would-be blockbuster. That he was obviously ill-at-ease as a family-friendly swashbuckling hero is no great offense, as not everyone can do what Orlando Bloom and Brendan Fraser seemingly did in their sleep during their primes. But in the four years since the doomed would-be franchise, Gyllenhaal has instead done what movie stars are supposed to do, headlining interesting, quirky, sometimes commercially challenging fare that might not have gotten made or not gotten a wide release without their participation. The reason that the “Prince of Persia saved my career!” narrative is so compelling is that it mirrors the very real narrative of “what movie stars are supposed to do.” I am speaking of George Clooney.


George Clooney didn’t kill Batman with Batman & Robin, despite the actor choosing to fall on the sword in nearly every interview over the last seventeen years (it stopped being funny ten years ago), although Batman & Robin may have inadvertently saved George Clooney’s career in the long-run. As a longtime television actor who shot to fame in E.R., the actor took the understandable “strike while the iron is hot” approach and made a bunch of movies in a short amount of time, churning out From Dusk Till DawnOne Fine DayThe Peacemaker, and Batman & Robin in a two year span. The utter failure of Batman & Robin, which put the kibosh on the ongoing Warner Bros. (Time Warner Inc.) franchise and very nearly killed the careers of nearly every major participant (Chris O’Donnell, Alicia Silverstone, Uma Thurman, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and director Joel Schumacher all took long-term mortal blows).



But Clooney recovered by playfully taking the blame, taking stock of the kinds of movies he wanted to do, and noting that he could mostly afford to do them thanks to the paychecks he had already accumulated. So Batman & Robin was followed by films like Out of SightO Brother Where Art Thou?, and Solaris. He struck up working relationships with the likes of the Coen Brothers and Stephen Soderbergh and used his media-friendly profile to get their films bigger profiles in the bargain. He didn’t entirely avoid so-called “big films” entirely, as The Perfect Storm and the Ocean’s trilogy weren’t exactly art house fare even if they were still old-school star vehicles right as the whole “four-quadrant global blockbuster based on a known entity” phase was about to overtake Hollywood. 



But most of his out-and-out star vehicles were more along the lines of The AmericanThe Men Who Stare at Goats, and Michael Clayton. The average George Clooney star vehicle opening weekend outside of films like Batman & Robin and Gravity is about $12 million. But films like The DescendantsSyriana, Good Night and Good Luck (which he directed to copious Oscar nominations in 2005), or Up in the Air tend to be leggy as all heck and go on to play in the year-end awards circuit. Even when they don’t, such as Clooney’s The Ides of March in late 2011, they tend to do solid weekend-to-final multipliers ($40 million domestic off a $10m debut) by virtue of being the best choice in the marketplace for adult moviegoers. They are cheap (around $20m) pictures that do anywhere from $60m to $100m worldwide and thus are quite profitable despite (or because of?) the fact that they represent “the kind of movie Hollywood doesn’t make anymore.” 



Jake Gyllenhaal’s career path has followed a similar course. Nightcrawler is his twentieth film in just under sixteen years, and what you see is a general lack of would-be blockbusters. Yes he starred in the high-profile The Day After Tomorrow (still his biggest opening weekend at $67 million in 2004) and we all know how Prince of Persia turned out ($330m worldwide, but on a $200m budget and just $90m in America). But those films are the exceptions rather than the rules. We can debate when Gyllenhaal came to prominence among the film pundit/critic circles, but let’s just call it at 2001 for Donnie Darko for the sake of this discussion. Since then, Gyllenhaal has starred in a variety of old-school movies, from Brokeback Mountain to Proof to Jarhead to Brothers (which was until Lone Survivor the highest-grossing film at $43m worldwide concerning the post-9/11 military engagements) to David Fincher’s Zodiac.



Yes he eventually tried on blockbuster tent poles for size in 2010, but it was a brief flirtation and after that it was back to films like Source Code and Prisoners. Like Mr. Clooney’s post-Batman & Robin output, Gyllenhaal’s recent films have been mostly cheap films that eschew conventional franchise desires that nonetheless proved popular with audiences and critics and made strong profits precisely due to their relatively low budgets. Open Road Films’ End of Watch earned $48 million worldwide on a $7m budget. 20th Century Fox’s Love and Other Drugs (a somewhat mainstream romantic comedy with Anne Hathaway) earned $102m worldwide on a $30m budget. Duncan Jones’s Source Code cost just $32m to make, opened with just $14.8m but still make $147m worldwide for Summit Entertainment. And Warner Bros.’ Prisoners, co-starring Hugh Jackman, earned rave reviews and earned $122m on a $46m budget despite being a 2.5 hour R-rated thriller about child abduction. A24′s Enemy earned rave reviews and made $3.3m worldwide on a very tiny theatrical (and concurrent VOD) release. Obviously it’s not a “hit,” but I’m going to presume it wasn’t very expensive either.



And now Jake Gyllenhaal has opened Nightcrawler, an $8.5 million thriller about people who videotape crime scene and accident scene footage for the local newscasts, to a pretty decent $10.4m debut weekend. The film has earned rave reviews and Gyllenhaal has an outside chance at an Oscar nomination depending on how the rest of the preordained Oscar contenders hold up over the next eight weeks. It is the kind of film that we all claim Hollywood doesn’t make anymore. But it got made, it looks appropriately cinematic despite its low-budget (I saw it at a “premium large format” screen and it looked gorgeous), and it received a national wide multiplex release. Like Mr. Clooney, Jake Gyllenhaal has based his movie stardom in smaller, adult-skewing, and often topical (RenditionBrokeback Mountain, etc.) films that aren’t would-be franchise installments or films with blockbuster ambitions.



This is how movie stardom is supposed to work in the best of times. It’s what movie stardom was back when Tom Cruise and Tom Hanks ruled Hollywood, with movie stars using their capitol and their draw to get interesting movies made and seen by wide audiences. Gyllenhaal isn’t the only one playing this game, but I felt his run worth highlighting as he is the one perhaps most successfully playing the George Clooney version of stardom today. He is using his capitol, which to be fair is partially rooted in the relative advantages of being a handsome white male actor in an industry that has much use for just that demographic, to make cheaper, more idiosyncratic pictures that can play to audiences who don’t want a blockbuster at the multiplex every week and still make strong profits. He is using his obvious talent and his current stardom and the privileges that go with that for the kind of films that we all claim we want to see more of, films that are budgeted low enough so that a $10 million debut weekend can lead to eventual success.



It doesn’t merit nomination for sainthood, but it does make me quite intrigued and excited to see what Jake Gyllenhaal does next with his lower-budgeted creative freedom. I’m sure he’ll eventually cash in for a major would-be blockbuster, but even next year’s Everest (an ensemble drama from Universal/Comcast Corp. based on the tragic 1996 expedition) cost just $65m to produce. Clooney still makes films like Gravity and Tomorrowland from time to time, albeit usually in a supporting role. But in today’s Hollywood, the low-budget movie stars are all-but-certain to have more interesting careers than the big-budget ones.


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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Donnamarie on Mon Nov 03 2014, 21:30

Very insightful article. I've always appreciated the film choices George makes. I admire how he balances doing the small films that resonate with him and sprinkles in a big picture once in a while to help "pay the rent". Jake is a terrific actor. Tends to play darker roles. But he takes chances with his roles and I see that as good thing.

Thanks Nicky80 for posting.

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Nicky80 on Mon Nov 03 2014, 21:37

Yes i love his film choices too. This evening German TV showed "the Descendants" ... Thumbs up!  I'm glad he could balance it between small movies and Blockbusters like Ocean's.....

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Donnamarie on Mon Nov 03 2014, 21:55

I like the Descendants so much. Each time I watch it I pick up more from the way George portrayed this man struggling to keep his life together with his children.

Just watched Good Night and Good Luck this past weekend. Hadn't watched it in about 3 years. Really a well done movie in so many ways.

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Joanna on Mon Nov 03 2014, 22:26

Donnamarie...I watched Good Night & Good Luck
again recently.
It's so absorbing in every way, I love it.

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by LornaDoone on Tue Nov 04 2014, 15:48

Well at least the article did highlight George's films as much as Jakes.  (what I mean is that they just didn't throw out the Clooney name in the title to get noticed) he actually discussed George's films.  Nice change there.

Enjoyed Out of Sight - really the first film that I noticed George and still love Soderbergh's direction and editing.

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Joanna on Tue Nov 04 2014, 17:35

I'll have to watch Out of Sight again soon, I can't
remember much about it.
Except...there's some undressing involved I think ?

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Donnamarie on Tue Nov 04 2014, 18:05

I loved Out of Sight. The role George played is one he plays so well. A guy with a less than stellar past but has a good heart and convictions.

Oh yea and we see George strip down to his boxers. That's "out of sight" for sure!

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Silje on Tue Nov 04 2014, 21:46

But he showed more in Solaris right?

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Donnamarie on Tue Nov 04 2014, 22:19

Solaris! Nice ass!

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by amaretti on Tue Nov 04 2014, 23:23

Bathtub scene in " Out of Sight " . Oh my . Very Happy

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Donnamarie on Tue Nov 04 2014, 23:55

Nice ass in The American. I guess I'm on the short list of people who loved that movie.

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Cece42 on Wed Nov 05 2014, 00:17

Donnamarie wrote:Nice ass in The American.  I guess I'm on the short list of people who loved that movie.


Donnamarie, this is probably the only time you and I will ever agree, but I loved this movie.

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Donnamarie on Wed Nov 05 2014, 01:47

Cece42 then we agree to agree. This was such a terrific role for George. I think it's always a challenge when there isn't much dialogue for an actor to use to express themselves. George was able to express so much through his facial expressions and body language. Also loved that it was filmed in Italy. The cinematography was beautiful? Such a European feel to this film.

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Cece42 on Wed Nov 05 2014, 03:08

Donnamarie wrote:Cece42 then we agree to agree.  This was such a terrific role for George.  I think it's always a challenge when there isn't much dialogue for an actor to use to express themselves.  George was able to express so much through his facial expressions and body language.  Also loved that it was filmed in Italy.  The cinematography was beautiful?  Such a European feel to this film.


OMG I agree again, and I also agree about the nice ASS, LOL!!!!!!!!!

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Silje on Wed Nov 05 2014, 06:43

Donnamarie wrote:Nice ass in The American.  I guess I'm on the short list of people who loved that movie.

I am on that list too.

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by bgarabedian on Wed Nov 05 2014, 07:30

Jake is a great actor, and hopefully the new Mr. Clooney will have a lot of success in his films like Nightcrawler. Noone can every replace george, but someone has to take the throne. I guess it must be jake. bg

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by jd68 on Wed Nov 05 2014, 13:54

Donnamarie wrote:Nice ass in The American.  I guess I'm on the short list of people who loved that movie.
I loved this movie too! I had heard bad things about it and didn't see until a couple years after its relase. I think it was marketing all wrong. I love George is his dark roles but the general public seems to prefer him as Danny Ocean in the Ocean's 11 trilogy.

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by LizzyNY on Wed Nov 05 2014, 14:17

I could make a long list of actors who are maybe more talented actors, maybe as well known world-wide, maybe (to some) better looking, but none of them has the complete package that is George. There are a lot of actors who might have George's career, but IMO, none of them have that special combination of qualities that have made him such a huge star.

jd68 - I think several of his movies are better than people think they are. Whether people went to see them when they were first released depended on so many things -marketing, timing, competing releases, critic's reviews - so maybe they didn't get the attention they deserved. Yet they're still being played on tv constantly, which they wouldn't be if nobody was watching. FDTD, One Fine Day, The Perfect Storm, Out Of Sight are just a few. (I'm not counting Batman & Robin, which recycles on tv fairly often but is truly an awful movie - even though George is pretty good in it, considering, and IMO is NOT the reason it stinks! I lay that solely at the feet of Joel Shumacher.)

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Donnamarie on Wed Nov 05 2014, 15:02

I totally agree with your assessment LizzyNY. I think George has a unique acting style which plays to who George really is and he understands that. George doesn't have a huge acting range but he knows what he can do well and he picks those roles that really suit him. He is very good at choosing his roles carefully. And he does take chances on smaller films that he appreciates even though he knows that won't be blockbusters. He definitely stays true to himself. He is not a sellout. I have mentioned here before that even Harvey Weinstein has said that George is one he truly admires in Hollywood because George stays true to doing films that mean something to him and he takes chances.

I never understood why most critics panned The American. Some critics' reviews which were positive were spot on as to what the film was about and what it was trying to convey. And there was a reason why it lacked much dialogue and the pacing was more deliberate. I thought this movie really highlighted and embraced George's talent of communicating to the camera that sense of loneliness and fear that you see in his body language and facial expressions. And done so well without the need of the spoken word.

I remember seeing The Artist when it first came out. Jean Dujardin did a terrific job in the lead role. But I often thought George could have also played that role exceptionally well.

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Way2Old4Dis on Wed Nov 05 2014, 15:46

I'll give you a comparison actor: Robert Downey, Jr.

This man is a huge acting talent. Minus the spiral into drug oblivion, and if had continued to take the challenging roles, he could/would have been counted among the absolute greats, I think. Look again at Less Than Zero and Chaplain, among his early work.

But he became Ironman and stopped acting. He now takes parts for huge money, that only require him to be RDJ in a particular setting. He left Gravity, and couldn't elevate The Judge -- which has Robert Duvall, for whom everybody brings their 'A' game -- because every other actor out-performed him.

He is having the opposite development trajectory as George, who may be coming up on the twilight of his big and high-paying roles, but who has grown to be a much better actor than when he was commanding the marquee (the theatre sign, not the tent). I think George has more range than people give him credit for. And I'm hoping that his upcoming releases will show that. He's working with two good directors who are new to him, so we should see something out of him that we haven't seen before.

Jake Gyllenhaal is a fine actor. He reminds me more of the pre-Bourne Matt Damon (in intensity, not looks) than he does George. He'll forge his own path, not emulate someone else's. But he could do a lot worse than to be called "the next George Clooney." Like, the "next Robert Downey, Jr."

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Donnamarie on Wed Nov 05 2014, 16:12

Way2Old Yes Robert Downey Jr. is a really fine actor. I actually haven't watched many of his films at all. I was watching GNAGL this weekend and he had a role in it but it was a pretty small role. I'm not into action figure movies so didn't see Ironman. Never saw Chaplain. Wonder if you think that was his best part. Didn't see him in Sherlock but doubt that role really tapped into his true abilities. Like George he does comedy and drama really well. He's an actor who I'd like to see in more substantial emotional roles. He could do a Coen bros. role.

FYI I hate when actors are tagged with the "next" fill in the blank any well know actor. The next DeNiro, Hanks, Day-Lewis, whoever. If an actor is that good at their craft they have their own unique persona and don't need to or should be compared to other great actors.

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Silje on Wed Nov 05 2014, 16:25

But the poor journalists have to write about something Donnamarie and these kind of articles tend to sell.

Personally I never cared much for Robert Downey Jr.

Loved Robert Duvall in Apocalypse Now. That scene with him is the only thing I like about that film. The beach scene  with the chopters.
 
Jake Gyllenthal is okey I guess. I mostly remember him as Heath Ledger's love interest in Brokeback Mountain. Really liked that film. 

I think the younger Generation of actors are kind of bleak. My favs are still the older guys and I have long list of them.

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by fava on Wed Nov 05 2014, 17:56

Way2Old4Dis wrote:I'll give you a comparison actor: Robert Downey, Jr.

This man is a huge acting talent. Minus the spiral into drug oblivion, and if had continued to take the challenging roles, he could/would have been counted among the absolute greats, I think. Look again at Less Than Zero and Chaplain, among his early work.

But he became Ironman and stopped acting. He now takes parts for huge money, that only require him to be RDJ in a particular setting. He left Gravity, and couldn't elevate The Judge -- which has Robert Duvall, for whom everybody brings their 'A' game -- because every other actor out-performed him.

He is having the opposite development trajectory as George, who may be coming up on the twilight of his big and high-paying roles, but who has grown to be a much better actor than when he was commanding the marquee (the theatre sign, not the tent). I think George has more range than people give him credit for. And I'm hoping that his upcoming releases will show that. He's working with two good directors who are new to him, so we should see something out of him that we haven't seen before.

Jake Gyllenhaal is a fine actor. He reminds me more of the pre-Bourne Matt Damon (in intensity, not looks) than he does George. He'll forge his own path, not emulate someone else's. But he could do a lot worse than to be called "the next George Clooney." Like, the "next Robert Downey, Jr."
I feel this way about Johnny Depp and the Pirates movies.....

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by PigPen on Wed Nov 05 2014, 18:06

Cece42 wrote:
Donnamarie wrote:Cece42 then we agree to agree.  This was such a terrific role for George.  I think it's always a challenge when there isn't much dialogue for an actor to use to express themselves.  George was able to express so much through his facial expressions and body language.  Also loved that it was filmed in Italy.  The cinematography was beautiful?  Such a European feel to this film.


OMG I agree again, and I also agree about the nice ASS, LOL!!!!!!!!!
Lots of comments about George's admirable posterior... but-with the baggy jeans.. when was the last time we actually got a glimpse of the goods? gotpics

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Way2Old4Dis on Wed Nov 05 2014, 18:14

I've never been that fond of Depp. He's always seemed more like a persona onscreen than an actor who inhabits the characters. And I have never seen an installment of the Pirates franchise. Every preview I saw reminded me of an effeminate Keith Richards after a drunken trip in a time machine.

I like Gylenhaal's story choices. He has that in common with Clooney. I might even compare End of Watch to The American. Completely different stories, but I think an argument could be made for the similarities in what the characters conveyed.

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Donnamarie on Wed Nov 05 2014, 18:19

There are a lot of women who find Depp so sexy. It is absolutely lost on me. But then again there are those who don't see the attraction to George's sex appeal and charm. I liked Depp in Chocolat and that's about it.

Was End of Watch a police drama? Can't remeber.

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Way2Old4Dis on Wed Nov 05 2014, 18:23

Yep, police drama that came out a couple of years ago. It's more of a day-in-the-life story, but the day turns out to be a very bad one.

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Donnamarie on Wed Nov 05 2014, 18:30

PigPen, go rent The American. That's the last time I saw George's naked butt! And have semi explicit sex. He hardly ever does that on screen.

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by LizzyNY on Wed Nov 05 2014, 18:48

No naked butt, but IMO the sexiest scenes are in Out of Sight. OMG! Can't believe they didn't really like each other much.

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Donnamarie on Wed Nov 05 2014, 18:55

LizzyNY I didn't know that George and Jennifer didn't like each other much. I thought George wanted her for that role. Did they have a falling out or something?

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by LizzyNY on Wed Nov 05 2014, 20:36

Donnamarie - They did want her for the role, and he has said she was the right choice. (See the ITAS interview) They had great on-screen chemistry. Can't remember where I read it, but it seems off-screen they were really just colleagues and never developed a friendship (or anything else). No falling out - just no connection.

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Silje on Wed Nov 05 2014, 21:28

Way2Old4Dis wrote:I've never been that fond of Depp. He's always seemed more like a persona onscreen than an actor who inhabits the characters. And I have never seen an installment of the Pirates franchise. Every preview I saw reminded me of an effeminate Keith Richards after a drunken trip in a time machine.

I agree Depp is more like a persona onscreen than an actor who inhabits the characters. But I liked him since I first saw him in What's Eating Gilbert Grape. He is always interesting to watch and in certain films like Chocolate he is reallty hot.

I also saw Leonardo Dicaprio for the first in Gilbert Grape. Like him too. Can't believe he still haven't won an Oscar.


I think Jennifer Lopez said once in an interview that George wasn't boyfriend - material.  She sounded like she knew what she was talking about.

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Nicky80 on Wed Nov 05 2014, 21:52

Silje wrote:
Way2Old4Dis wrote:I've never been that fond of Depp. He's always seemed more like a persona onscreen than an actor who inhabits the characters. And I have never seen an installment of the Pirates franchise. Every preview I saw reminded me of an effeminate Keith Richards after a drunken trip in a time machine.

I agree Depp is more like a persona onscreen than an actor who inhabits the characters. But I liked him since I first saw him in What's Eating Gilbert Grape. He is always interesting to watch and in certain films like Chocolate he is reallty hot.

I also saw Leonardo Dicaprio for the first in Gilbert Grape. Like him too. Can't believe he still haven't won an Oscar.


I think Jennifer Lopez said once in an interview that George wasn't boyfriend - material.  She sounded like she knew what she was talking about.


Yes i wonder about this too....Maybe he didn't kiss enough asses to get it. Or they wait until he is 50 or so.....

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

Post by Katiedot on Wed Nov 05 2014, 21:55

Way2Old4Dis wrote: Every preview I saw reminded me of an effeminate Keith Richards after a drunken trip in a time machine.
I think that was exactly his inspiration!

I'm a huge fan of Johnny Depp although I'm wondering whether he's given up acting altogether (I still haven't been able to sit through that dreadful surprise version of pirates of the caribbean known as the Lone Ranger that he did last year). RDJ I still have hope for: I think he's incredibly talented (Chaplin was on TV recently) and I can see him doing small scale films as well as the blockbusters. I've really enjoyed the Ironman and Sherlock franchises.

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Re: Jake Gyllenhaal Is The New George Clooney

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