Jake Gyllenhaal is so method he got sick in the ‘Everest’ altitude simulator

Jake Gyllenhaal

Here’s a photo of Jake Gyllenhaal at the Venice Film Festival premiere of Everest, which is exactly what it sounds like. The film, directed by Baltasar Kormakur, reenacts the unfortunate 1996 Everest ascent that was a fatal climb for eight men. The actors in the film made a real-life ascent to Base Camp, and this was a total Gyllenhaal move. He’s completely obsessed with putting himself through the physical paces for a film role. He can’t get into character mentally if he’s not also there physically. Jake sees this as part of his art, and he desperately wants that Oscar. Will Everest get him there? Perhaps it will do so faster than Southpaw ever would.

I’m also including photos of Josh Brolin and Jason Clarke, and Kaiser will cover the other photos (da ladies) from the premiere. This isn’t a “who would you rather?” post because that seemed inappropriate when it comes to a sullen douchebag (with possible anger issues) like Brolin. Instead, let’s talk about this Variety interview where Jake discusses what it was like to portray climber Scott Fischer, who was the first American to reach the Everest summit. Here are some excepts about Jake’s usual method-acting madness:

On playing Fischer: “There’s a tremendous responsibility trying to re-create something which has happened.”

He met Fisher’s two children: “It was a beautiful thing to sit down with the two of them and hear what their father was to them and to feel him through them.” His responsibility, Gyllenhaal said, was “to try to find the the energy, not the specifics, ultimately it was the essence of Scott Fischer which was most important. The essence of that expedition was the essence of everybody on it.” His interest in the movie “has always been about the people who climbed Everest on this expedition and their reasons for doing it. It’s not about getting to the top; it’s about community and the connection with the climbers around you.”

The 30,000-foot altitude simulator with Brolin: “Josh and I decided to stay longer. We thought we could handle it, and we were feeling good. We were laughing and talking about the fact that we didn’t think it was so bad, and then, all of a sudden, we got out of the chamber and just felt sick. We realized the power of being so high up and what that does to your mind. … We stayed in there (simulator) too long because we were enjoying ourselves. We were between 26,000 and 36,000 feet … Three days after that, we were in a severe depression.”

[From Variety & Houston Chronicle]

I wonder if Jake and Josh felt high in the altitude simulator. They have those things in some of our local gyms so people can simulate climbing, but I don’t think anyone is weird enough to take those things to 30,000+ feet for the heck of it. And it really makes no sense for these guys to “go method” at this altitude anyway. Everest Base Camp is only 18,192 feet above sea level! So much method, so much Gyllenhaal. He’d better win an Oscar someday because he really wants one.

Josh Brolin

Jason Clarke

Photos courtesy of WENN

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

28 Responses to “Jake Gyllenhaal is so method he got sick in the ‘Everest’ altitude simulator”

Comments are Closed

We close comments on older posts to fight comment spam.

  1. GoodNamesAllTaken says:

    Who said, “Whatever happened to just acting?” Or some similar quote.

    • Amelia says:

      Laurence Olivier to Dustin Hoffman (I think.)

      • Joaneu says:

        “Is it safe??”
        Yep, Larry was slightly miffed by Dustin’s ways.

        Method acting does create some interesting personalities, I’ll give it that.

    • M.A.F. says:

      I think Olivier said “it’s called acting” in response to Hoffman literally running around on set to get out of breath.

    • Leah says:

      He said “why don’t you just try acting, my dear boy?” or something of the sort.
      But lets be real, Hoffman is a far better movie actor than Larry ever was, so…

  2. danielle says:

    Scott fisher and ed viesturs were the first Americans to summit Everest without supplemental oxygen, but Americans had sumitted previously.

  3. Belle Epoch says:

    The Ian Mclellan video about acting is hilarious (and I think he is INCREDIBLE):


  4. Citresse says:

    That last photo; the hair color looks so unusual, I don’t know what to call it.

  5. SuperMoist says:

    U saw it too! That terrible dye job is all I can see now. My ex had that color one year when he bleached his hair and then went swimming in a pool later that day.

  6. Nicole says:

    The people in these photographs are taking themselves way to seriously.

  7. Size Does Matter says:

    I can understand going in the simulator. When else will they probably have that opportunity? Sounds cool to me. Plus, I think it would be difficult to truly appreciate and accurately portray the impact extreme altitude and lack of oxygen has on your ability to function.

    I’m excited to see this movie. I love stories about people overcoming/confronting impossible odds. Human beings are capable of truly unbelievable things, in a good way (not just the negative ways that seem to dominate the news).

    • Birdix says:

      And the top of Everst is 29k feet, so it makes sense to me that they would use that altitude. They don’t stay at base camp. The Krakauer book and the IMAX movie were fascinating, will be interested to see this too, especially because I will never get there myself–get migraines at about 5k feet! So much human drama, between the mental stamina required to get there, the hubris of wealthy but unprepared climbers and their reliance on Sherpas and guides like Fisher, the camaraderie and the hierarchies, and the capricious weather combined with the decision-making process balancing safety and profit.

      • Size Does Matter says:

        I love Krakauer’s book, too. Have you read the “response” book by guide Anatoli Boukreev (sp?)? It’s also interesting and gives a different perspective on the incident.

        I read recently that the Sherpas just reworked the route through the Khumbu icefall after the earthquake this year took it all down, and only one climber is expected to summit in the fall season before they close the mountain for the season. Such risk the Sherpas took for one climber! It’s fascinating to me. Glad I’m not the only Everest dork on Celebitchy!

      • Birdix says:

        Yes! I was fascinated by Anatoli’s book, because he was such a polarizing figure. Was he arrogant (for summiting w/o air) and irresponsible (for descending before his entire team reached the summit?). Or a brilliant climber who had the foresight to see the problems before they came and do what he needed to do to save the entire team? Does the final answer rely on whether his team survived and to what extent is his success attributable to twists of fate? The ambiguity with this one is Shakespearean is scope. Love it!

    • Pituka says:

      Agree, I can see why they wanted to do it.

  8. Bridget says:

    I don’t think I’d say Gyllenhaal is desperate for an Oscar, he seems to genuinely enjoy what he’s doing, and has been choosing interesting stuff for years. And who wouldn’t take the opportunity to go to Everest Base Camp if presented with it?

    He is so adorable an funny in interviews, just avoid his print stuff and you’ll like him an awful lot more.

  9. Esteph says:

    I saw Southpaw and I could see Oscar written all over it, and I’m not sure if I feel the same way about Everest.

  10. Chris says:

    Don’t care what anyone says, Jimmy Hickok Forevaaah.

  11. meme says:

    GAH…I cannot stand Jakey Poo. So much pretense, so much try hard. He most definitely is gunning for an Oscar.

  12. Pituka says:

    I have to confess I didn’t care about Jake a few years ago, but the guy has won me over with his latest movies. He is a great actor and he seems like a really nice dude overall. So, I don’t really understand what’s this blog problem with him.

    As for the film, I want to see it, I loved ‘Into Thin Air’, and just to clarify some things, I read only the actors who were in Jason Clarke’s “team” flew to Kathmandu and climbed to Everest base camp. Jake Gyllenhaal was not one of them, he filmed in Italy and London, so half of the shit thrown to him in this post is not even justified :/

  13. Miran says:

    You say 18k feet like that’s something to sneeze at but that is only 2000ft short of Denali, and the summit of Everest is just over 29k.

  14. AG-UK says:

    He wasn’t the only one to get sick Josh Brokin too. I have always liked Jake he seems to love his job and I can see him actually climbing a mountain he is that outdoorsy type.