This week, Jake Gylenhaal went on the Howard Stern show to talk about an alternate darkest timeline in which he grew up a Disney star and one of the great loves of our lives (RIP) never existed.
When he was 11, Gyllenhaal had a small role in City Slickers, followed up with an audition and an offer to play a major role in the early 90s masterpiece Mighty Ducks. If you were a young enough child at the time, you were probably really excited to see this movie when it came out. So just imagine how amazing you would have felt to hear you could be IN it. Now imagine how devastated your little heart would have been to hear you weren’t allowed to. Apparently Gyllenhaal’s parents, who both work in the industry, were okay with him acting, but didn’t want it to take all of his time and they sure as hell didn’t want him to explode in to child star.
My parents were like, ‘Look, you’re about to enter junior high school, you gotta get your education, that’s the most important thing. I promise you, you hate us now, but you’ll thank us later.’Try telling a preteen boy he can’t be a Mighty Duck, and you’re going to get at least a mini-tantrum.
I definitely remember crying on the kitchen counter. I was like, ‘You guys are crazy.’Ultimately, I suppose this worked out for the best. Gyllenhaal’s career sure hasn’t suffered by waiting until he’d finished high school to star in movies, and we may have lost out on something even greater than a Disney Gyllenhaal if things had gone differently. Because the role Jake was offered was none other than Charlie Conway.
Now, I’d like to be able to assume that Joshua Jackson (RIP)* would have gone on to be a huge star anyway, but those Ducks movies carried him all the way Dawson’s Creek. What if he had never been given the opportunity to infiltrate our young hearts? WHAT IF WE’D BEEN GIVEN A GYLLENHAAL PACEY?
*Vivian Kane doesn’t know where this joke came from. It was before her time. But she will gladly perpetuate it. RIP forever, Josh.