WEIRDLAND: JakeGyllenhaal: "My DNA has the Moroccan desert in it"

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

JakeGyllenhaal: "My DNA has the Moroccan desert in it"

Jake Gyllenhaal in US Weekly magazine

"Jake Gyllenhaal becomes a man of action this Memorial Day weekend in his new film, The Prince of Persia, where he plays a muscle-bound street urchin-turned-hero. Soon the hunky star will be talking to PEOPLE to answer your questions.
So, what do you want to ask Jake? Curious how he got those abs of steel? Want to know what it's like to attend the Oscars? Wondering what qualities he looks for in a woman?

Send your question to (be sure to include your name and hometown, too) and you could see it featured in an upcoming issue of PEOPLE!

Scans of Jake Gyllenhaal in OK magazine, courtesy of
Wet, Dark & Wild

"The best biggest stunts were done by me, the most dangerous ones as well', he jokes, looking tanned and relaxed in a room at London's Dorchester hotel.
Jake Gyllenhaal outside The Claridges Hotel in London

'I've always really wanted to play a prince - some people might say I am in a lot of ways a princess.'

Jake Gyllenhaal with a fan attending 'Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time' Screening in LA (c) Danielle & Angie May 18, 2010

'I'd never ridden a horse in my life, so I was sent away with the others on a kind of horse-riding boot camp before we started the film. It was brilliant, and now horseback-riding is one of my hobbies.

'One of the stunts in the film that I do myself is when I'm swept onto a horse as it's coming towards me, and I was really proud of that.'

Jake also appears to take some death-defying leaps across rooftops in the movie - but he admits that most of these stunts, known as parkour, were performed by acrobats.

'I did a lot of the landings, which are the hardest part,' he says. 'Hard on your knees, and other parts of your body.'

Ben Kingsley, Gemma Arterton and Jake Gyllenhaal attending "Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time" LA Premiere

He also built up an impressive six-pack, wore hair extensions and adopted an English accent for the movie. 'It helped being surrounded by a British cast - I would have the accent on all day', he says.
'It's a hero journey, love story and a comedy', Jake says.
'My DNA now has the Moroccan desert in it, because I definitely breathed in my share of sand', Jake says.

'I can't recall the amount of times between takes you had to just get the sand out of your eyes, mouth and ears so looked like you weren't literally made of sand.'
But by far the most difficult part of filming the movie, he says, was working with ostriches. 'They're the most terrifying animals', Jake says.

'We were told, "don't make any noise around the ostriches. They'll tear out your eyes and rip out your heart." So, I was naturally terrified. They look like they're innocent, but they're really not.'

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