Jake Gyllenhaal - Jake Gyllenhaal likes hard to love characters

Jake Gyllenhaal likes to play hard to love characters.

The 32-year-old actor - who is known for taking on complex roles - admits he is always attracted to a part that has a hidden depth, like his latest Detective Loki, in 'Prisoners' because he likes something that he can get his teeth into.

Speaking to the Guardian newspaper, he said: ''I look for something in the story that offers love in a more complicated way. I don't look for darkness, whatever that means, but in my mind, darkness acknowledges great light too. I think when it comes to a character, I'm moved by folk that I might struggle to love at first; characters that I have to do enough research on and think enough about to be able to really fall in love with them. Recently, in particular, that's what's been happening. I love Detective Loki. I found it hard to let him go.''

The hunky star also spends a great deal of time researching his roles - watching 100 hours of footage of police interrogation for a three minute scene in 'Prisoners' - and even pushes his brain to the ''point of exhaustion''.

He explained: ''I don't think my approach to acting is all necessarily in service of the character. I think, selfishly, I've put it in service of myself, my perspective on the world and helping my life. I have an overactive brain and as a result of that, I can really get in my own mind. So I like to try and exercise it to the point of exhaustion. I think I took all the work from research but I used it therapeutically, too, in a strange way. I realised with that type of research how much it changed my life and what a wonderful thing the job of acting is, in that it can give you perspective on the fact that what you do really isn't that important at all.''


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