“If Heath doesn’t want to do it”: Jake Gyllenhaal Would Have Lost His Role in $176 Million Movie Had Heath Ledger Refused to Work in It

"If Heath doesn't want to do it": Jake Gyllenhaal Would Have Lost His Role in $176 Million Movie Had Heath Ledger Refused to Work in It
Featured Video

Jake Gyllenhaal, a name synonymous with talent and versatility, has established himself as one of the finest actors over time. With a career spanning over two decades, Gyllenhaal has impressed audiences with his captivating performances and a remarkable ability to delve deep into the minds of his characters. One such of his outstanding performance is visible in the well-acclaimed 2005 movie, Brokeback Mountain. However, little did anyone know that Gyllenhaal’s inclusion in this cinematic masterpiece was on a precarious edge, as it depended on the decision of his co-star, the late Heath Ledger.

Advertisement

Also Read: “He grabs me and slams me against the wall”: Heath Ledger Broke Jake Gyllenhaal’s Nose While Filming $178M Movie That Was Rejected by Mark Wahlberg

Jake Gyllenhaal
Jake Gyllenhaal

Jake Gyllenhaal Delivered His Iconic Performance In Brokeback Mountain

Brokeback Mountain, directed by Ang Lee and released in 2005, is a poignant and groundbreaking film that delves into the complexities of love, longing, and societal expectations. Set against the backdrop of the American West, the film explores the romantic relationship between two cowboys, Ennis Del Mar (Heath Ledger) and Jack Twist (Jake Gyllenhaal). 

Advertisement

The film portrays the profound emotional connection between Ennis and Jack, which defies societal conventions and forces them to grapple with their own identities. Ledger and Gyllenhaal deliver exceptional performances, breathing life into their characters and capturing the complexity of their internal struggles. Their on-screen chemistry is palpable, adding depth and authenticity to the narrative. The film was able to bring much required positive attention to homosexual relationships back in the day. 

Also Read: “Heath almost broke my nose in a kissing scene”: Heath Ledger Was Hurting Jake Gyllenhaal Badly During Their Intimate Scenes in Brokeback Mountain

Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal
Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal

Jake Gyllenhaal’s Role Was Highly Dependent On Heath Ledger

It is for sure that both Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger were a perfect fit in the movie and their performances are adored by the audiences to date. However, the Nightcrawler star revealed that he was selected for the role only because The Dark Knight star said yes to the role. Adding on, the Spider-Man: Far From Home antagonist shared that Ang Lee, the director of Brokeback Mountain, had several actors combination in mind, and after a short yet awkward meet with the Hulk director, Gyllenhaal was informed that he will only get the role if Ledger decided to work in the movie as well. 

Advertisement

“When I first met with Ang there were a number of different combinations of actors he had in mind–and each combination of actors was different. None stayed the same. You would hear, ‘Oh, this person and that person, or not them at all.’ Or ‘this person and that person,’ and then ‘not them at all. After I had met with Ang–a brief, somewhat awkward meeting–I heard, ‘Now he’s thinking about Heath Ledger and you. But if Heath doesn’t want to do it, then it’s going to be somebody else’.” 

Also Read: “Heath refused..It’s not a joke to me”: Heath Ledger Was Not Happy After Oscars Wanted to Make Fun of ‘Brokeback Mountain’

Brokeback Mountain (2005)
Brokeback Mountain (2005)

It is surely tough to imagine any other actor playing the lead role in Brokeback Mountain except Ledger and Gyllenhaal. The performance and chemistry of the two stars left no room for the audience to even think of another actor playing the role.

One can watch the phenomenal performance of the two stars in Brokeback Mountain, available to stream on Netflix.

Advertisement

Source: Showbiz Cheat Sheet

The Distinct Style of James Gunn | FandomWire Video Essay

Avatar

Written by Vivek Kumar

Articles Published: 399

Vivek Kumar is a young, enthusiastic writer with a natural talent for expressing his thoughts through writing. Currently pursuing a major in Psychology, he is dedicated to sharing his critical writing with the rest of the world. Having honed his craft as a content writer at FandomWire, Vivek has written 400 articles here. Along with his passion for writing, Vivek is also an avid anime fan. His ceaseless ardor for writing, coupled with an innate aptitude, enables him to produce quality content consistently.