Friday, January 28, 2011

Jake Gyllenhaal plays a changed man in "Love & Other Drugs"

Taking control when the ultimate men’s drug Viagra was finally introduced to the public in the 90s, Jake Gyllenhaal suits up as one hot pharmaceutical rep, named Jamie, whose charm with women is as high as his monthly sales quota in the film “Love & Other Drugs”.

Starring opposite Anne Hathaway as Maggie in “Love & Other Drugs,” Jake Gyllenhaal plays Jamie Randall whose account is based on the nonfiction book by Jamie Reidy who chronicles his experiences as a Viagra salesman for pharmaceutical giant Pfizer. The film’s co-scribe and producer Charles Randolph who first got hold of the book finds it very intriguing, “Jamie wrote about experiences I thought were analogous to films like Jerry Maguire, Wall Street or any movie where a young man goes into the workplace with ideas of what the world is going to be and the world beats them out of him,” recalls Randolph.

Director Zwick says the roles of Jamie and Maggie represent significant steps for the two actors. “[As Jamie] Jake’s not just romantic, interesting and charming, he’s enormously funny. Jake’s sense of humor is nothing new to those who’ve known him socially, but up to now we’ve never quite had the opportunity to see that on film. He has a great leading man quality and is extraordinarily at ease, and that comes of maturity and experience. Jake’s work in this film allows us to witness a younger actor become a leading man, and that’s very exciting for a filmmaker and, I think, an audience.

Gyllenhaal’s Jamie is the black sheep in a successful family. He’s the ultimate seducer, and would have been perfectly happy to float through life minus the burden of responsibility or connecting to anyone... until he meets Maggie. “He’s bright but a bit self-destructive,” says the actor. “He’s content to be successful with his life as a salesman of a revolutionary drug – a job for which he’s perfectly suited – and continue to succeed at fake connections. He’s an expert at those because he’s a great performer."

The movie is set in the late 90s, a moment, says Zwick, “when the fabric of American life changed forever” because for the first time, drugs became commercialized. At the top of the sales and advertising charts was a little blue pill called Viagra, a new treatment for erectile dysfunction. Viagra’s blockbuster sales trigger Jamie’s ascension to the top of the heap as a Big Pharma sales rep. Then, because of Jake’s relationship with Maggie, he goes deeper into the world of medicine and drugs and the different strands of the story knit together and, I hope, resonate off each other.”

Jake Gyllenhaal's outstanding and believable performance in “Love & Other Drugs” earned him a Golden Globe nomination but failed to grab the trophy to Paul Giamatti. He was remembered in his performance in "Brokeback Mountain" and the recently shown adventure-movie "Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time". “Love & Other Drugs” is now showing in the Philippines.

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