Jake Gyllenhaal owes his great professional moment to a disappointment from the past

A Jake Gyllenhaal Things haven’t always gone smoothly for him. During the past decade we have seen him destroy a non-stop of interesting projects such as prisoners either enemy by Denis Villeneuve, the thriller Nightcrawlerthe acclaimed western The sister brothers and even joined Marvel in Spider-Man: Far From Home playing the villain Misterio, but all these titles They arrived after the actor experienced one of his worst failures. And this was key for him to rise in such a way in the industry in the following years.

Jake Gyllenhaal at the 2022 Cannes Film Festival (Photo: LOIC VENANCE/AFP via Getty Images)

Jake Gyllenhaal at the 2022 Cannes Film Festival (Photo: LOIC VENANCE/AFP via Getty Images)

We must go back to 2010, when Gyllenhaal was Disney’s star signing to star in his adaptation of Prince of Persia, one of the most recognized platform video games of all time. All those who grew up in the 90s will perfectly remember this adventure title that with its addictive platforming, its battles or its classic rescue story of a princess under the pressure of a time limit, swept the computers of yesteryear, serving as a starting point for a saga that a decade later reached its splendor on video consoles with the tetralogy called The Sands of Time.

Of course, the challenge of doing justice to this legacy was huge for the House of Mouse, so They decided to take as a starting point the same argument of The Sands of Time, invest 200 million dollars and surround themselves with a talented team.. This was the case of director Mike Newell, who already had experience with fantastic cinema after working on Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire and had a good reputation in the industry thanks to titles such as Donnie Brasco either Four Weddings and a Funeral. Also that of interpreters such as Gemma Arterton, Ben Kingsley or Alfred Molina, but above all, of Jake Gyllenhall, who emerged as a youth icon with Donnie Darko and it didn’t take long for her to establish herself as one of the most prestigious young promises in Hollywood thanks to jarheadby Sam Mendez, Brokeback Mountain by Ang Lee or Zodiac by David Fincher.

The movie of Prince of Persia it had everything going for it to work, be a success, and break the curse of failure that has always plagued video game adaptations. But it was not the case. After its premiere, the critics destroyed it and on websites like Rotten Tomatoes it was only able to obtain 37% positive reviews from the specialized press. But the worst came with the total rejection of the public, who were neither satisfied with the work of adapting the video game nor did they end up feeling attracted to approach the theaters. So the movie became One of Disney’s biggest flops of the past decadeachieving only 336.3 million dollars at the box office, which was far from making its high cost profitable.

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But beyond the failure itself, working on a failed project of these characteristics could have been a black mark impossible to erase in the career of its protagonists. But it was not the case with Gyllenhaal. In fact, for him, although he even faced criticism for whitewashing when playing a role that should have been for an actor of Iranian origin, it was rather the opposite, because his career continued to rise thanks to non-stop work with prestigious filmmakers like Denis Villeneuve, Jean-Marc Vallé, Tom Ford, David Gordon Green, Bong Joon-ho, Jacques Audiard or Antoine Fuqua with films like Prisoners, Enemy, Nightcrawler, Demolition, Redemption, Nocturnal Animals, Stronger than Fate, Okja or The Sisters brothers. And this has an explanation.

According to statements given by Jake Gyllenhaal in interviews, such as the one granted to Yahoo in 2019, this bad experience Prince of Persia it made him very thoughtful when choosing roles, analyze their mistakes and try to learn from them to give the best of themselves. And there is no doubt that he has applied this very well throughout all these years, since the projects continue to rain down on him, he mostly works in prestigious films and has never experienced a resounding failure again.

“I think I learned a lot from that movie because I spend a lot of time trying to be very thoughtful about the roles I choose and why I choose them.” Gyllenhaal said when asked about Prince of Persia. “And you’re bound to slip up and say, ‘That wasn’t right for me,’ or ‘That didn’t fit right in.’ There have been a number of roles like that. And then a series of papers that do it”nuanced

Analyzing his career since then, it is notorious that he has barely had a small slip. Only minor titles such as the science fiction film Life or David O’Russell’s comedy An Accident Called Love could be considered projects that were not entirely successful. The first, although it barely reached 100 million at the box office, had critics in its favor and its 50 million cost would not lead us to speak of failure. And in the case of the film by O’Russell, director of The good side of things and The Great American Swindle, is a project that the director began in 2008, abandoned in 2012 and premiered in 2015 under a montage in which the filmmaker had nothing to do with. That is, a movie before Prince of Persia It will lead the actor to rethink things. And it is that in the end, this failure was almost like a boost to his career.

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