Actors On Actors



I can’t help being a tad (understatement of the year) disappointed that Jake wasn’t where I thought he would and should be but I’m happy all the same that End of Watch got two nominations:

Best Supporting Male = Michael Pena

Best Cinematography = Roman Vasyanov

Congratulations on these much deserved acknowledgements and fingers crossed! Complete list of nominees here


On a side note, I’m also very happy, and I know this has nothing to do with Jake Gyllenhaal but allow me this little detour, that KEEP THE LIGHTS ON, a compelling, brilliant gay-themed movie, got 4 nominations, including Best Male Lead (Thure Lindhardt, one of my favorite actors), Best Director (Ira Sachs) and Best Feature. Fingers crossed for you too.


In the spirit of the SAG Awards, Variety invites thesps to applaud their colleagues’ 2012 screen turns.

Carey Mulligan wrote this heartfelt piece about Jake and End of Watch:

Carey Mulligan and Jake at the 22nd Annual Palm Springs International Film Festival Awards Gala – 2011

A large part of the work involved was observing protocol on the midnight shift with the LAPD. Both he and Michael Pena witnessed pretty tragic, unpleasant scenes that affected them both. His descriptions of the ride-alongs were charged not with voyeurism but with a profound respect for the policemen and women whom they were observing. His reinvigorated sense of perspective and humility was palpable. I sensed just how deep he had already gone, and that the experience was filling him in some new way. Not that Jake had ever taken work lightly ­­– quite the opposite — but what was so distinct on this occasion was that this work was releasing him. He seemed more free, more alive and more comfortable in his skin than I had ever known him.

Watching Jake in “End of Watch,” I saw all of that joyous freedom on the screen. His complete ease in scenes with the brilliant Michael Pena makes those moments wrap around you in all their infectious warmth, and pulls you into the car with them. Their comraderie is the most beautiful portrayal of friendship in the truest sense: absolute trust, love and unflinching loyalty.

It is a love story that broke my heart and Jake’s work is fearless. He is not daunted by the intimacy of their relationship, the lightening fast emotional changes, the dichotomy of bravado and honesty or even a meticulously choreographed first dance at his wedding.

When he stood to speak at the closing of the movie, with such quiet grace, I realized I hadn’t thought once of the Jake I know as my friend but only as the character he embodies in this wonderfully special movie.

Diego Luna (who’s directing Michael in the upcoming film ‘Chavez‘) wrote this about Michael Pena:

Michael Pena and Diego Luna on the set of ‘Chavez’

He took on a complicated task in “End of Watch.” The entire film rests on a brotherhood filled with significance and everyday interaction. It’s a celebration of friendship, a declaration of love between two men who accompany each other every single day, who communicate without the need to look each other in the eye and selflessly complement one another.

It only took watching the scene after the wedding once they’ve had a few drinks to understand that a human being is complete only when given the opportunity to experience friendship as a concept in perpetuity.

With this film, Michael confirms once again that he is well-equipped to take on more and more ambitious roles each time, and that he can easily transition from drama to comedy without any difficulty, and always with great success.

Speaking of End of Watch, here’s a little something for those of you who can’t wait for the release of the DVD (January 22, 2013). I wish we had a whole DVD made of this stuff, as greedy as it may sound.

Jake on making friends with Michael Pena

HitFix  gives reasons why End of Watch and Jake should get a nod for the 2013 Independent Spirit Awards. The nominations will be announced in a few hours – Anna Kendrick and Zoe Saldana will present them so watch this space.


18 thoughts on “Actors On Actors

  1. What a treat! Thanks so much, GC, for the early Christmas present – End of Watch “Behind the Scenes.” It makes me even more anxious for the Blu-ray in January. Fingers crossed for the Independent Spirit Awards to put lots of attention on this wonderful movie and the fantastic actors who really shine in it.

  2. That was great. I also cant wait for DVD. I enjoy looking at how the movie come s together. How they get that shot. Nice. 😀

    • As much as I love the final result, I almost prefer the films making-of. Just like you I enjoy to get a look at how they get there, the different takes of the same scene, how the director leads the actors, how they discuss the scenes. Can’t wait for more of that.

    • Hey, I’m excited for you 🙂 You’re from Spain, aren’t you? It should open on the 5th if I’m not mistaken. Not so long, another patient waiting about to be rewarded. I’d love to hear your thoughts about it if you’re willing to share them with me. Thanks for commenting!

      • Hi, yes. That’s right. Sure, I will let you know how I liked it. It will be dubbed and I will miss Jake’s voice, that I don’t like.

  3. Yes, Jake should have been nominated and it sucks giant donkey balls that he wasn’t. But it’s nice to know that he has said he personally finds fulfillment in working on a project that he can devote himself to and play a character that he can immerse himself in. Awards for a specific performance are nice but are not the same thing as developing a body of work to be proud of. I like his attitude and I have confidence that recognition of his talent in the form of major awards is definitely in his future. In the meantime, I will enjoy every movie he makes whether they are considered award-worthy or not.
    *I reserve the right to repeat this comment verbatim if he’s not an Oscar contender for his performance in End of Watch. 😉 *

  4. It’s true, Jake has often stated and recently with even more energy that what fulfills him is to devote himself to a project, which is absolutely admirable. I don’t think though that this thing didn’t have an impact of some sorts on him. You know what I think about the Oscars, but it’s different with – relatively – minor awards. I guess I wouldn’t be this disappointed and annoyed if neither Jake nor Michael were nominated, as selfish as it may sound on my part. Someone chose one instead of the other, which means that someone decided that Michael gave a better performance or worse, that Jake gave a really bad one and I don’t believe that’s true. I saw the movie twice, the second time I decided to observe it with more detachment scrutinizing both performances and honestly, I don’t think Michael deserved more than Jake.

    I’ve always believed that what makes a good film or a good performance is not the award that it gets acknowledged by and I’m even more convinced now. Just like you I’ll keep enjoying Jake’s movies no matter what the Awards lobbies decide, the way I’ve been doing these past 7 years.

    • I know, I felt the same way about Michael Pena getting a nomination but not Jake. Then I realized that Pena’s nomination is for “best supporting male.” Had Jake been nominated it would have been for lead male. Since they are in two different categories I don’t get the feeling that Pena’s nomination is any kind of reflection on Jake’s not getting nominated. I choose to feel that Michael Pena gave such an outstanding performance because Jake was there to be a huge creative influence. His performance was not better than Jake’s but it was infinitely better than if he were playing the same character with a different actor in the lead. Actually, I’m a little surprised that End of Watch didn’t get more recognition from the Independent Spirit Awards in a general sense. Maybe we’ll have a more pleasant Awards experience with An Enemy next year.

  5. I agree with Susan here. They are in 2 different categories. Mike is less known, so maybe he was noticed and appreciated because he did such a good unexpected maybe job. Jake is no surprise to be that good. And all depends also from other nominees in Jake’s category. Maybe competition was too strong. I don’t remembers the others now. There still are other awards, we may still count on nominations.
    I wonder how Jake feels about it. I hope nobody will ask him tomorrow. I bet he’s happy for Michael. He praised him very much for Zavala’s role. But still…

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