Pictured: Jake Gyllenhaal in 'Southpaw' | Photo: The Weinstein Company
Director Antoine Fuqua told folks that they wouldn't recognize Jake Gyllenhaal in his role in Southpaw, and he wasn't lying. Due out in 2015, Gyllenhaal plays Billy "The Great" Hope, a boxer who has tragic circumstances befall him. He's also ripped to shreds and, in this promo photo, he looks like he's taken a beating (while gaining a reported 15 pounds of muscle).
Fuqua thinks this is Jake at his most masculine, telling Deadline that he insisted that the actor make sacrifices:
"I'm so pumped, man," Fuqua said. "Jake is going to change how people see him. I had him training twice a day in the boxing ring, he did two-a-days seven days a week. I pretty much had him with me and my trainer every day. I took him to almost every fight. I had him train at Floyd Mayweather's gym in Vegas and we watched Floyd's fights, and the Manny Pacquiao fight. He trained in New York at Church Gym with real fighters. We literally turned him into a beast... Jake, my god, he's a very electric, powerful fighter in this movie, and a guy who fights for his daughter. I'm confident that this will change how people see Jake, as a leading man."
But if this is Gyllenhaal's Raging Bull marquee moment, does it really mean we won't get any more sweet, sensitive roles that made us fall for him in the first place?