New pictures of Maggie Gyllenhaal looking amazing in a jumpsuit at the Won’t Back Down New York Screening
Appearances from 2012 > Won’t Back Down New York Screening
Want to make men uncomfortable? Just mention vibrators.
That’s the lesson of Maggie Gyllenhaal’s press tour the last couple of days, where she’s made the late-night men all kinds of uneasy describing the plot of her new movie, Hysteria. It takes place in Victorian England and documents the true events that led to a doctor accidentally inventing the vibrator to cure women of their “hysteria” — a catch-all misdiagnosis. (Read EW’s review of the film).
Last night Gyllenhaal was on The Daily Show, and Jon Stewart tried to talk to her about the film’s subject in a supportive and adult manner — and completely failed.
Watch Stewart struggle below:
But Stewart’s not alone. The night before, Gyllenhaal was on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, and Fallon struggled to control the interview as well, jokingly fanning himself and dropping things off his desk. Gyllenhaal, for her part, looked like she was having a total blast watching these guys try and keep it together.
Check out Fallon’s video below — the Hysteria talk starts at 2:25:
I’ve made so many mistakes that have been helpful in my life. I make them all the time in trying to do everything. It’s impossible not to. I’m not perfect at all—as a wife, as a mother, as an actress.
When I made Crazy Heart in 2008, that was the first time I really went back to work after having my first child, and that movie was so intense that I lost touch with some motherly stuff and was just in the world of the movie. Even trying to figure out what was for dinner was tough. My husband, Peter, was going to work in London a lot of the time, and Crazy Heart was the type of movie that you’d shoot in three weeks and be out drinking tequila with the director and Jeff Bridges till three in the morning. We had to make a real relationship together in order for that one to work. Peter said to me, “You go and do whatever you need to do.” But my daughter wasn’t cool with that: she was still going to wake up at 6:30 a.m.
Within the same year, I made Nanny McPhee in London. I went and rehearsed for a week, got married, went on a two-day honeymoon, and we started shooting. It was a long, four-month shoot. I had a 2-year-old, too. But I was and am in love with Emma Thompson, who wrote and starred in the film. I wanted to please her and be friends.
One day, we went over to her house for brunch, and afterward I was going to see Ornette Coleman, who’s a big jazz musician. I wasn’t that into Coleman, but he’s one of my husband’s favorites. Emma was so shocked that I was going out that night on a date with my husband, but Peter really wanted to go. The concert was awesome, and I hadn’t been out that late.
I went to work the next day, and it was a huge day: acting with children, animals, tons of props, and a long scene with lots of talking. I thought it went fine. But at the end of the day, the producer came up to me and said, “Would you like me to get someone to help you with your lines?” I said, “No, I’m OK,” and then went into the makeup trailer and burst into tears. I couldn’t stop crying.
Emma comes in and says, “What’s the matter?” I told her what happened. She said to me, “You’re a new wife, you have a 2-year-old, you’ve been shooting this movie for four months. You’re going to f–k up! It’s OK. And you didn’t know your lines that well today.” That was the first time that I realized that being good at everything at the same time isn’t possible. Hearing Emma, someone who is so incredibly talented and wise, say that really stuck with me. Something has to give, you know? I can’t break down and get horribly defensive when someone is telling me I need a little help. I just try to do my best.
But now that we had another child in April, I don’t know how I’m going to do it. Peter turned to me the other day and said, “How are either of us going to work now?” I have no idea.
Just last night, we heard that Jamie Foxx will likely take on the role of the President of the United States in Independence Day director Roland Emmerich’s White House Down. The film, described as “Die Hard in the White House,” stars Channing Tatum as a single father Secret Service agent tasked with protecting the president when bad guys initiate a hostile takeover of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Now it looks like Tatum will be getting some help from the fairer sex, since Variety reports The Dark Knight star Maggie Gyllenhaal is enlisting as a fellow agent, securing the female lead in the movie. More below!
Aside from the aforementioned Batman film, Gyllenhaal hasn’t been featured in many big action dramas, so it will be interesting to see her suit up and get some true action experience under her belt. She’s better known for her quiet but strong performances, so she should provide an interesting counterpoint to Tatum, who’s been having a breakout year and developed much more of a charismatic on-screen persona recently.
Production on White House Down begins this August and a release date has been set for November 1st, 2013, so it looks like this will be the first of the two competing White House action movies to hit the big screen. The other movie is Olympus is Fallen from director Antoine Fuqua with Gerard Butler attached as the lead, but there haven’t been nearly as many updates from that project since it was announced and unless we see some Snow White & The Huntsman/Mirror, Mirror style schedule shuffling happening on the calendar next year, we’ll likely see White House Down hitting the big screen first
It’s not a great stretch to imagine Maggie Gyllenhaal in a film with sexual overtones.
After all, she first came to the attention of many of us with her weirdly smoldering performance in “Secretary.” Now she’s co-starring in “Hysteria,” a film about the events, in late-19th century London, that led to the invention of the vibrator.
Gyllenhaal had no trouble imagining it, or taking part in it. At a recent interview about “Hysteria,” she said, in her husky voice, “A lot of the movies I make have a lot to do with sexuality, because I’m interested in sexuality, and so is everybody else. I think that, for example, a sex scene can be like a soft core porn-looking thing, or it can be an amazing opportunity for a different kind of acting and communicating, which is what it can be in real life, too. I don’t know if porn speaks to that, but there are a lot of movies that do offer an opportunity to see what’s in a woman’s mind, sexually.”
Oddly, Gyllenhaal doesn’t have any sex scenes in “Hysteria.” The dramatic comedy focuses on a doctor and his associate (Jonathan Pryce and Hugh Dancy), who cater to women suffering from what science has since proved to be the imaginary disorder called hysteria – a condition that, in the based-on-fact story, could only be dealt with successfully by inducing utterly non-sexual orgasms in the doctors’ office.
Gyllenhaal plays the Pryce character’s daughter, a rowdy, outspoken woman who’s an early purveyor of women’s liberation.
“I really liked the character,” she said. “I also thought the script was great, and I was interested in how the vibrator was invented. That’s how it is with me. I’ll read something, and sometimes it’ll just pull me in and I’ll think I really have to do that. That’s how I felt about this when I read it.”
Though she appeared to be totally relaxed talking about the film, she admitted that it’s not all that easy when discussing it with friends.
“When I tell people what the movie is about, and try to think of what words to use,” she said, with a giggle, “that catches me up a little.
“We shot my scenes first and then I left, but we were all wondering, ‘How are you gonna do that?’” she added, referring to sequences where middle-aged Victorian women are eagerly climbing onto examination tables and doctors are literally warming up their hands. “We were all blushing and giggling about what these women were doing. I don’t think people talk about it very much and I think it does still make us kind of flushed and uncomfortable.”
But Gyllenhaal admitted that the situation presented in the film is both outrageous and kind of ridiculous when looking at it from a contemporary point of view. She then pointed out that she was referring to her character – Charlotte’s – political stances.
“The things Charlotte says are very simple, politically,” she explained. “They’re things that we all know now, and can all agree with, like women are equal. Nothing she says is radical now. So I wanted those simple political things to be like the life in her body. I wanted her to be excited and happy and overwhelmed with a passion for those things, as opposed to didactic. I wanted her to be like a dervish, like a wild person who could have been from anytime. But because of the perspective of the movie, which is a comedy, I felt that she could be sort of a magical person in the way she said the things she says.”
Asked what her husband, Peter Sarsgaard (who’s about to play the pornographer Chuck Traynor in the film “Lovelace”), thought of her being in this film, she said, “We’re both actors, and we’ve done two plays together. Being onstage with him, night after night, we both realized that we respect each other, and we think very similarly about our work. As far as this movie, he’s not a husband who would say, ‘Oh, you can’t make a movie about a vibrator, or don’t take your clothes off.’ I don’t think he would have married me,” she added, laughing.
Then another thought came to her.
“People with vibrator stores kept sending us vibrators while we were making ‘Hysteria.’ By the time I finished the movie I had been sent about 15 vibrators. It was the beginning of a pleasant surprise.”
Ubuntu Education Fund’s annual NYC gala is set to take place on Wednesday, June 6th, and will raise funds to benefit the children of the townships of Port Elizabeth, South Africa.
The gala’s 2012 Host Committee members include Maggie Gyllenhaal, Peter Sarsgaard, Donna Karan, Amandla Stenberg of The Hunger Games and Justin Tuck of the New York Giants.
Ubuntu Education Fund is a nonprofit organization that provides children in South Africa with education and employment opportunities.
This year’s event will also support the charity’s new Early Childhood Development program and U.ME.WE campaign, which aims to raise $30 million over the next three years.
Sponsors for the gala include Blue Ribbon restaurants, Baby J Catering, AriZona, Christie’s Auction House, United Airlines, Heartland Brewery, Starr Africa Rum, Lievland, Magellan Gin, Landhaus, Riazul Tequila, Zyr Vodka, Madiba Restaurant and SCOOP NYC.
Maggie Gyllenhaal is stunned by the shock of journalists who have caught early screenings of her new movie about the invention of the vibrator.
The Dark Knight star thought R-rated period comedy Hysteria would be a hoot for critics, but it seems many of them have been left surprised by the film’s risque scenes of uptight women experiencing orgasm.
She tells BlogTalkRadio.com, “I liked the comedy of ladies having loud orgasms in doctor’s offices. I watched this movie once in Rome, just sort of popped my head in, and I’ve talked to a lot of international press in Italy and Scandinavia, all over and I have been surprised by how shocking the movie is to them with the orgasm stuff and women coming and thinking about their bodies that way.
“It came out of not being used to seeing stuff like that. Even I felt that way and the first movie (Secretary) I ever made was an S&M (sadomasochism) movie! I do not think of myself as prudish at all. I’m interested in sex, I’m curious about it and I think of myself as pretty open. But I was surprised by my own response and the audience’s response by how uncomfortable it still makes us.
“I had some interesting conversations with women in Italy. My favourite one was with this woman who asked me, ‘Which one had done more for women and women’s rights movement, the vibrator or the dishwasher?’ I think I have to go with the dishwasher!”
“I’ve made lots of movies about sex,” Maggie Gyllenhaal says soberly. “I feel pretty open and curious and interested. I was surprised to feel as much as I did.”
Ms. Gyllenhaal is remarking on what happened when she watched her new film along with the crowds at the Toronto film festival last year. “I felt like … people [in the audience] were a little hysterical, flushed. I felt that a little bit, too. I was just surprised that we all as a culture are so unused to seeing or talking about women having orgasms. I didn’t expect to feel that way.”
While only inspired by historical fact, “Hysteria,” set in Victorian London, focuses on two doctors who specialize in the treatment of an amorphous female condition given the catch-all term that also serves as the movie’s title. Dr. Mortimer Granville (Hugh Dancy) and Dr. Robert Dalrymple (Jonathan Pryce) find that stimulating a “paroxyism” (i.e. orgasm) in the female can relieve them of their nervousness, depression or other such feelings of malaise. But the intensity of the work – there are many shots of poor Dr. Granville soaking his hands in ice water – leads the younger doctor to stumble on the invention for the first “personal massager” (i.e. vibrator).
Having starred in many a steamy scene, including those of the quirky S&M drama “Secretary,” Gyllenhaal has no problem with a frank discussion on sexual politics. Given that “Hysteria” is released only a few years after Sarah Ruhl’s Tony-nominated play “In the Next Room (or The Vibrator Play)” which also covers the topic of Victorian vibrators, she’s happy to speculate as to why we’re seeing such an interest in that era of sexual repression and eventual awakening.
“Maybe we’re just ready to starting thinking about women’s sexuality and pleasure in a way that we hadn’t been before,” she offers. “What I keep thinking is interesting is that [these Victorian doctors] in the movie have this really difficult job of walking this line between believing that they are performing a medical procedure that has nothing to do with sexuality. At the same time, people have been having sex since there have been people. Orgasms are associated with sexual pleasure. Like, how dissociative do you have to be to think that this has nothing to do with sex?”
Weeks before the birth of her second daughter, Gloria, Maggie Gyllenhaal is, quite literally, barefoot and pregnant.
She kicks her feet up, makes herself comfortable on a couch, and smiles a bit distractedly. She’s got baby brain and has been nesting at home.
“I tried to get a little dressed up today for this,” says Gyllenhaal, dressed in loose black pants and a top. “I find that my brain is a little slower pregnant.”
Now, Gyllenhaal is trying to switch from parenting to promotional mode to talk up her new movie, Hysteria, opening Friday. In the story of how the vibrator was created, Gyllenhaal, 34, plays a women’s rights activist in Victorian London. Her character, Charlotte, is pugnacious, demanding and non-conformist, something Gyllenhaal relished playing.
“Charlotte is kind of a fantasy, a woman’s fantasy of a woman. I wish I could be that brave and be that sure of myself.
“There’s a part of her that’s so strident that she misses some subtleties. She’s shut herself off from love, and I haven’t done that. She likes to cause chaos, she wants to shake it up, and that’s always an appealing quality to see in someone.”
Plus, Charlotte was without question ahead of her time, Gyllenhaal says. “The things she says are what we all believe to be the truth: that an orgasm makes a woman feel good.”
Gyllenhaal is taking a break for the summer, to be home with her newborn, her daughter, Ramona, 5, and her husband, actor Peter Sarsgaard. Eventually, she’ll go back to work on HBO’s version of Jonathan Franzen’s The Corrections, playing another deeply passionate woman.
“Denise is such an interesting character. She changes so much. You think she’s one thing and she becomes another thing. She’s so relatable. It’s so cool to play a chef. She’s very sexual, and food and sex are all combined for her.”
She’s also unsure about what it means to have another child, and how the new addition will affect her life.
“I’m curious to see how much I remember about nursing and changing diapers. About all of it. I have no idea how to do it with two. Having children is the most humbling thing you can do.”
And even though Gyllenhaal and Sarsgaard live a privileged life in New York City, she struggles with the same questions any working mother faces. Can you do it all? And if so, how?
“Peter was joking with me the other day. He said, ‘How are either of us ever going to work, ever?’ We’ve figured out pretty well how to do it with one. At first we would take her with us. Now she’s in kindergarten and it’s important that she’s settled. I wouldn’t take her out for any old thing.”
Sarsgaard will be directing his first feature film, Born to Run, based on the non-fiction work of Christopher McDougall about Tarahumara Indians.
And yes, his wife would happily sign on.
“He and I work so well together, talking about drafts, about the script, talking about casting. I’d do whatever he wanted. I really enjoy talking with him about projects and helping him think things through.
“Artistically we’re a good combination. I love acting with him. My experience acting with him is on stage, and I love it, but I don’t know how we’ll do that for a long time.
“It means neither of us is home to put the kids to bed.”