WEIRDLAND: "The Dark Knight" & Maggie

Sunday, July 13, 2008

"The Dark Knight" & Maggie

"There isn't a more anticipated movie this summer than THE DARK KNIGHT. Viral games have worked fans up into a frenzy. The early reviews have been stellar. Screenings sold out weeks in advance. People are practically pulling their hair out with excitement. So what better way to celebrate what could be the best superhero movie all time by giving stuff away! Yup, it's time for another one of our patented contests, this time chock full of DARK KNIGHT swag. Show off your love with a Joker tee or check the time of the next DARK KNIGHT screening on your fancy watch, valued at over $100. So what to do to win you ask? Easy, just enter your name and email address below (double entries will be disqualified), return on Monday, July 21st to see if you're one of the randomly picked winners". Source:

"If Maggie Gyllenhaal were a superhero, she'd combine the power of strength with invisibility. The actress, 30, has opted for an existence that's removed from Hollywood and Manhattan, living in Brooklyn with her fiancé, Peter Sarsgaard, 37, and their daughter, Ramona, who turns 2 in October. She could become easier to spot after her co-starring turn in The Dark Knight, out July 18, one of this summer's most awaited films.

Gyllenhaal takes over for Katie Holmes, who appeared in 2005's Batman Begins, as Rachel Dawes, Gotham's ambitious, nattily attired prosecutor who's torn between DA Harvey Dent (Aaron Eckhart) and Batman himself (Christian Bale). Gotham, meanwhile, is being terrorized by a demonic, disfigured criminal: the Joker (Heath Ledger).
The film is Gyllenhaal's first bona-fide behemoth of a movie, a prospect that leaves her a little leery.

"I really didn't know if I wanted to do a huge blockbuster," she says. "And I don't think I realized how big it was going to be. I'm really proud of the movie, to be a part of something really great. When you see Dark Knight, you see that it's in no way a compromise."She's more circumspect when it comes to Ledger, who died of an accidental drug overdose in January. Gyllenhaal recently saw Dark Knight for the first time, but she isn't one to share any intimate memories of working with Ledger and has been critical of the circus-like coverage of his death and funeral. But she does say that watching him on screen left her "really emotional."

"In the middle," she says, "you sort of get lost in him being the Joker. … I felt like someone could hate this or love this, or think it's a wrong choice or a right choice, but really there's no way to qualify it. Sometimes in my work, you're just alive and being the person you're playing. It's unusual. It's difficult to get there. And I think Heath did. Nothing Heath could do was wrong."

Despite the film's dark subject matter, the set at times resembled a day care center. Gyllenhaal shot the film when Ramona was an infant and brought her to the set. There, she was often greeted by Nolan's four children. "Sometimes it was the only way we could see our kids," Nolan says. "She always came prepared, but that side of her helped keep things light on set."

Adds Eckhart: "Maggie brought her child to set, and Heath brought (daughter) Matilda. Gary (Oldman) has two beautiful young boys. So the baby talk was rampant in the makeup trailer. I remember just watching Maggie as she talked with such excitement about her daughter: 'She pumped out her cheeks,' and I'd be like, 'All right!'"

In interviews, Gyllenhaal is less revealing. She's crisply polite and friendly without ever bordering on cuddly. Forster says some may confuse her reticence with coldness, when in fact, "I'd say she's more quiet, a little bit shy."

She'll happily demonstrate the correct way to eat an artichoke or talk about her latest read, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao. But she's not sharing baby photos or anecdotes.

And she's on a tight schedule, thanks to her daughter's nighttime regimen: "This is an intense time with a kid. It's the time for the dinner and bath and bed, and I'd like to catch some of it."

Being a mom changed Gyllenhaal's outlook; at least for a while, working was out. "I read so many things that I could do, but it wasn't worth it to me," she says. "I don't know what it would take. Some kind of little spark? I didn't have it for a long time. I didn't, until she was about a year old. I really didn't feel ambition."

Now, that drive is back. And she's looking for "something hard. I want to find a really good, hard drama. But there are things I can't do anymore. There was a movie that wanted to shoot off the coast of Tasmania, on an island that had no inhabitants, no store.

"Peter was great. He said, 'If you want to do it, we'll figure it out; I'll go with you and take care of her.' I think it would be irresponsible. I can't do that anymore. Your priorities shift."

One thing she did last year: show serious skin in a campaign for luxe lingerie label Agent Provocateur.

Gyllenhaal was a fan of the line, especially after Ramona's birth left her "a good 20pounds heavier" and in need of a confidence boost.

"They make nursing bras, and I went right in there and bought three pairs of matching bras and underwear that made me feel so good about myself. All of a sudden, to have a hot-pink something peeking out from my shirt a little bit — it made me feel so good," she says.

And then, the British label asked her to pose in their racy campaign, which made its debut in September.

"I found myself, six months after having a baby, in my underwear, getting my picture taken. How did I get here?" says Gyllenhaal, smiling. "It was like playing a character. They're sexy, but they also have a little bit of irony in them. I love that."

But, like with Dark Knight, the scope of the project — and the attention she'd get for it — didn't really register with Gyllenhaal until later.

"I didn't know how scrutinized I'd be. My brother called me and said, 'I'm in Heathrow, and there's a 12-foot picture of you upside down in a negligee.' People are really rough on you when you do things like that. But I had a good time."

"Maggie Gyllenhaal has admitted that watching Heath Ledger's Dark Knight scenes will be "painful".

The actress, who plays Rachel Dawes in the Batman sequel, explained that she was deeply affected by Ledger's death and believes that seeing the movie will bring it all back."My heart really broke when he died", Gyllenhaal told Marie Claire. "I think seeing the movie will be painful. I saw this new trailer, which I loved, but Heath was all over it, and it was very sad to see it. Hard to watch." Source:

Also read this interview to Maggie, Gwyneth Paltrow and Liv Tyler: Source:


movie junkie said...

i still wish Katie Holmes had stayed on board as Rachel Dawes for the Dark Knight; it was like the time spent getting familiar with her character in Batman Begins was wasted...

Kendra said...

welcome to Weirdland, movie junkie!
I liked Katie Holmes, but I think Maggie has a more independent style, and maybe Nolan was looking for that.