Jake Gyllenhaal Is Obsessed With Getting It Right

The 33-year-old actor gives the best performance of his career in the darkly comic thriller Nightcrawler — this is how he pulled it off.

Open Road Films

NEW YORK — For weeks now, it feels like Jake Gyllenhaal has been just about everywhere, talking with just about everyone about his new film Nightcrawler, opening today. He was on Conan, reminiscing about his elaborate childhood Halloween costumes, and on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, literally getting the fuck scared out of him, and on The Tonight Show, throwing water in Jimmy Fallon's face for some reason.

But earlier this month, over lunch at a lively Italian café in downtown Manhattan, the 33-year-old actor took a break from shooting his newest film — the contemporary drama Demolition — to speak with BuzzFeed News. “I love this movie,” he said of Nightcrawler while diving into a bowl of pasta. “And I'm trying to promote it every way I can. I'm literally fitting it in lunch breaks. 'Are we shooting in Manhattan on Monday? Can you run up to this thing and do an interview?' And I'm like, 'Yes! Whatever we need to do.'”

With all that time spent talking about himself, it's probably no surprise that Gyllenhaal is keenly aware of how he's perceived. At one point, while discussing his inspirations for his characters, he said, “I'll see a window, and I'll like the shape, and I'll think, What if a pocket on a shirt looked like that?” He stopped himself, almost apologizing for merely answering the question posed to him, and said, “I am very aware of how that sounds in terms of pretension.” Later, when asked specifically about how he transformed his body to play freelance crime scene videographer Lou Bloom in Nightcrawler, Gyllenhaal nearly repeated himself: “I'm very aware of how this will sound in the written word.” Then, when pressed about the weight he lost (roughly 20 pounds) and the importance of keeping healthy, he presaged his answer by asking for forgiveness because “it's really hard to talk about it and not sound lofty.” He chuckled. “But thank you for caring about me; my mother is the same way. She's always like, making sure that I've been fed, you know? So, she'll be very thankful that we met over lunch.”

End of Watch

Scott Garfield / Open Road Films

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