What is about to unfold, over steaming cups of tea on a recent Thursday evening, can only be described as an epic bromance between two very chiseled leading men.
“I hope this doesn’t come across as too much of a fluff piece with two actors who really, really loved working with one another,” Jake Gyllenhaal says with a sigh, a bit chagrined after spending an hour extolling the numerous virtues of Hugh Jackman.
The two geek out when they’re together, their conversation ranging from stupid paparazzi encounters in Manhattan to the times they watched ESPN in Gyllenhaal’s Prisoners trailer during filming. The two instantly bonded, and Jackman gives much of the credit to his wife, Deborra-Lee Furness.
“She has a lot of qualities of Jake, actually. When the two of them got together, Deb’s like, ‘I like him, he reminds me of me. He’s awesome,'” announces Jackman, grinning wickedly. “What comes into their heads comes out. They are idealistic, big dreamers, quite romantic. Both have a wicked sense of humor, very naughty. Don’t tell them what to do.”
He turns to Gyllenhaal, who looks almost teary-eyed. “You’ll tell me the (expletive) things about yourself, which most people want to hide about themselves, especially movie stars. Deb and I have been fans of Jake since October Sky — we’ve always thought that this kid is unbelievable.”
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When Hugh Jackman and Deborra-Lee Furness met for the first time, in 1995 in Melbourne, on the set of the TV drama “Correlli,” she was the star playing the title character and Jackman was the novice, hired to play her love interest less than an hour after graduating from the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts, in Perth. Right from the start the producers liked what they saw. At 26, tall and slim, with a rangy prettiness, Jackman played a feral sort, a convict beaten senseless in police custody, and Furness, then 39, played the prison psychologist battling her own attraction as she nursed him back to health.
You can see their first kiss online: The six-foot-two Jackman corners Furness in a prison hallway, blocking her exit and taking her breath away with a kiss that combines menace and unhurried sexual electricity. The difference in age didn’t seem to get in their way. The producers told her, “We’re really happy with your chemistry.” She told them she’d keep working on that.
The couple have clearly told their story before. Over a leisurely lunch three days before the premiere of Jackman’s sixth outing as Wolverine – the immortal X-Men mutant with the adamantium claws – in a restaurant nine stories below their Manhattan river-view apartment, Hugh and Deb happily recall the cat-and-mouse game of their mutual seduction: how Jackman suddenly stopped talking to her on set; how Furness, who is blonde, bluff, and quick to laugh, called him on his crazy behavior; how, by way of explanation, he waved her off, embarrassed about falling for the leading lady on his first professional job, confessing his attraction to her at the same instant he was saying he’d get over it; how she responded to the confession by saying, Yeah, she was falling for him too.
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Scans courtesy of Jody.
With many thanks to Jody at Hugh Jackman Fan Site, HJF has these amazing scans of Hugh Jackman gracing the recent over of Men’s Fitness. The July/August 2013 edition of the magazine has him talking about – what else? – his recent food and fitness regime to get him into shape for X-Men: Days of Future Past — and how he might be sticking to his current diet for good. There are a few new stories in this article, such as the cruel nickname of “Ana” in his youth and how fighting while on rollerblades might not be a great idea.
When talking with Entertainment Weekly, Hugh Jackman discussed the return of Wolverine on film. “I was starting to see a life free of steamed chicken breasts,” he joked regarding getting the call about X-Men: Days of Future Past, which will mark his seventh time portraying the mutant on screen. He also talked a little about having read the script and teases fans with the idea that he’ll be working with some of the new X-Men cast members as well. Check out some choice quotes below:
“I must admit, I was starting to see a life free of steamed chicken breasts,” jokes the actor. “They told me the idea and, at the time, it was Matthew Vaughn [directing]. Instantly, I knew it was a winner. It just felt like everything was coming full circle. However, I must admit my stomach and my mind were like, ‘Oh no.'”
Vaughn dropped out last October, but not before he gave Jackman an idea of the film’s super-secret plot. Jackman says he now has been given the full script (“I’ve read it. It’s really really fantastic.“) and is excited to reunite with his fellow X-Men and Singer. Says Jackman, “I owe, in a way, everything to Bryan. The first film I did in America was X-Men. Wolverine is a character I’ve loved playing and I can’t believe it’s going to be my seventh time playing it. It just blows me away. It not only feels like the right kind of project, it actually is so exciting that we’ll all be back together again. I don’t want to give away too much but I’m really excited not only to reunite with all those great actors but also to work with some of the other ones.“
ABC News has posted a new article on Hugh Jackman, in which he talks a bit about being a first-time Academy Award nominee (and whether he prefers that to hosting the prestigious ceremony). He also says that he “really love[d] playing” Jean Valjean in Les Misérables, and that the character will be “a hard one to leave.” Check out an excerpt below before heading to the source for more.
This year, [Hugh] Jackman is an Academy Awards nominee, but he has hosted the event.
“I love the Oscars,” he said. “I’ve always loved it from a kid. Hosting it, I loved it. I love somehow the pageantry of it. I love the, you know, the spontaneity of it and the show of it. I really enjoy it. So the great thing about being a nominee is that you get a pretty good seat, I am figuring… if I’m up in the mezzanine, there’s a very good chance I won’t be winning.”
Asked what advice he’d give to this year’s host, Seth McFarlane, Jackman replied: “I’ve got to be honest with you. Having hosted the Oscars, being a nominee? Walk in the park.”
Jackman has been married to actress Deborra-Lee Furness for 16 years, and they have two children. Family is a priority for Jackman, and he said he learned that from his own father, whom he called “the closest living example I know to Jean Valjean.”
“The one thing he constantly reminds me about – enjoy the celebration, and all of that – but at the end of the day, make sure your family are okay. Make sure the people around you are okay. And just make sure you are doing the right thing inside,” Jackman said, speaking of his father’s advice.
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The Hollywood Reporter has a brand new issue out — and Hugh Jackman is on the cover! The feature article inside is lengthy and incredibly informative, revealing some previously unhidden aspects of Hugh’s personal and professional life. He talks of his childhood, Hollywood friendships, goes into detail on his religious and spiritual views, and discusses the role of Jean Valjean. (He confirms there’s no immediate plans following X-Men: Days of Future Past, so it sounds like he’ll be spending time with family.) There’s also a great photo shoot and related video attached, so be sure to check them out.
Sitting at the Peninsula hotel in Beverly Hills, [Hugh] Jackman reveals himself to be a far more complex and far-ranging figure than many of his peers realize. As he gobbles down a breakfast of oatmeal, wheat toast and a five-egg omelet – muscling up for his next movie, X-Men: Days of Future Past, in which he returns as Wolverine for the sixth time – he adds to this impression by discussing a turbulent past that still lingers with him.
Open and immensely likable, he describes being 8 years old when his mother, Grace, abandoned him and his four elder siblings, leaving them in Sydney with their father, Christopher. His mother’s departure never was fully explained to him, and indeed Jackman only realized it was permanent when he was 13 and his father’s attempt at a reconciliation failed.
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