Jake Gyllenhaal has opened up in an interview on The Howard Stern Show this week, revealing what it was like to shoot intimate scenes with Jennifer Aniston.
Gyllenhaal appeared on The Howard Stern Show to discuss his new Netflix thriller ‘The Guilty’ and to share some of the highlights over his incredible career.
The actor, who co-starred alongside Aniston in 2002 film 'The Good Girl', told Howard Stern that his crush on her at the time made working together "not easy."
Stern asked Gyllenaal what it was like filming the love scenes with his onscreen crush, glibly suggesting that it must have been "torture" for him to film intimate scenes with beautiful actress Aniston, who rose to international fame for her role as Rachel Green on the television sitcom Friends (1994–2004).
Jake Gyllenhaal says filming with Jenifer Aniston was ‘torture’ pic.twitter.com/FTP6MAVzy8
— etalk (@etalkCTV) October 6, 2021
“Oh yeah, it was torture, yes it was,” joked Gyllenhaal, who was 21 at the time of filming with 32-year-old Aniston. “But it was actually not torture. I mean, come on. It was a mix of both.”
"Weirdly, love scenes are awkward because there are maybe 30, 50 people watching it. Maybe if you have a closed set that’s less," continued Gyllenhaal. "That doesn't turn me on. Most of the time it's oddly mechanical. And also it's a dance. You're choreographing for a camera."
To help “reduce the chance of any protrusion” as Stern so delicately put it, Gyllenhaal said that Aniston was quick to suggest using a strategically placed pillow while shooting love scenes to help make things more comfortable for everyone.
"I do remember a pillow. The pillow technique was used. That was just pre-emptive and generally always used when actually in a horizontal place in that movie.”
"I think that was actually Jennifer's suggestion. I think she was actually very kind to suggest it before we began,” laughed Gyllenhaal.
“She was like, 'I'm putting a pillow here.' That was all she said. I think I remember that."
I would say most men of my generation can understand where he's coming from....https://t.co/9xvHguClUv
— Brian Lilley (@brianlilley) October 6, 2021
In the film 'The Good Girl' Aniston plays a woman who is bored in her marriage and job at the local grocery store while Gyllenhaal plays a new employee who sparks Aniston’s interest, and so the pair embark on an affair.
Hiding his feelings from Aniston at the time, it wasn’t until 14 years later in 2016 that Gyllenhaal first spoke about his crush to People magazine.
“I will say, I had a crush on her for years. And working with her was not easy.”
I was – um yeah. That’s all I’m going to say. It was lovely.”
Back then he divulged that it wasn't her role in Friends that had initially attracted Gyllenhaal to Aniston, but who she is as a person.
"Not so much Friends, but kind of her personality from afar, and movies she was in," he had said. "And some of Friends – I'm not a huge Friends fan – but who she is."
Despite these revelations, it appears that a romance between the two is not meant to be.
Gyllenhaal is currently in a relationship with model Jeanne Cadieu, whilst Jennifer Aniston has recently been laughing off dating rumours between herself and ‘Friends’ co-star David Schwimmer that surfaced shortly after the sitcom's HBO Max reunion special aired back in May.
"That was bizarre. I could not believe that, actually. Like, really? That's my brother," Aniston told ET.
"But I understand it, though. It just shows you how hopeful people are for fantasies, for dreams to come true."