Jake Gyllenhaal Cried When He Didn’t Get Role in ‘the Mighty Ducks’

Not every actor is able to nab their dream role. No matter how great the performance is, something might come up that stops an actor from playing the part they truly want. Jake Gyllenhaal learned this lesson at a young age. However, it wasn’t a lesson he was ready for at the time. Gyllenhaal remembered crying when he couldn’t be recruited for the Mighty Ducks. But at a later age, he realized it was a good thing he wasn’t in the film.

Jake Gyllenhaal was born into the business

Jake Gyllenhaal standing on a stage
Jake Gyllenhaal | Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

Gyllenhaal has had family ties to the industry since he was a child. His father, Stephen Gyllenhaal, was a director, whereas his mother Naomi Foner was a producer and screenwriter. According to Biography, Gyllenhaal made his feature film debut in the film City Slickers. He also collaborated with his father in the movie A Dangerous Woman in 1993.

However, despite his already promising start in acting, there was one evasive role Gyllenhaal really wanted to do. So much so that Gyllenhaal admitted that he cried when he didn’t get the part.

Jake Gyllenhaal really wanted to star in ‘the Mighty Ducks’

A young Gyllenhaal was eager to be in the 1992 film The Mighty Ducks. According to CBS sports, Gyllenhaal’s performance in City Slickers got him the attention of two producers on the hockey film. The producers would later go on to audition Gyllenhaal for the role of Charlie Conway, and he got the part.

But his parents didn’t want him to do the movie.

“Yeah, I mean it was someone telling you you’re going to star in a movie, it’s crazy and then they say you can’t,” Gyllenhaal said. “I definitely remember crying on the kitchen counter. [To his parents], ‘You guys are crazy.’”

However, his parents’ reasoning was that the film would’ve taken too much time away from Gyllenhaal’s education. It was a sentiment that the Nightcrawler star ultimately agreed with later on in life.

“My parents were like, ‘You’re about to enter junior high school. You’ve got to get your education. That’s the most important thing. I promise you, you’ll hate us now, but you’ll thank us later.’ And I do,” Gyllenhaal revealed.

Why Jake Gyllenhaal is attracted to darker characters

As he’s gotten older, Gyllenhaal has played roles with a bit more gravity to them. Biography.com notes that Gyllenhaal intentionally avoided doing teen movies to establish himself as an adult actor. Because of this, he starred in films like October Sky and Donnie Darko in his career as a young adult. But even in his older age, it’s a habit he hasn’t really broken away from.

Nowadays, Gyllenhaal has more creative reasons for playing dark characters.

“Someone asked me once what it was like to play a lot of dark characters and I was like I have fun doing it,” the Good Girl actor said according to Female First. “Which seems to be off for people to understand like oh there all these dark subjects how can you have fun? And it’s what I love like it brings me joy. I come out of a scene that was sort of madness sometimes and I’m like that was so fun because being an actor you need your imagination”

Gyllenhaal later confided how essential these kinds of roles were to his imagination.

“And if you lose your imagination you’re done for and I’ve gone through different things where I’ve lost my imagination,” Gyllenhaal said. “I’ve gone completely into the real world with things; it’s no fun and ultimately not any better in my opinion.”

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