As the son of director Stephen Gyllenhaal
and producer/writer Naomi Foner, it is not surprising
that Jake Gyllenhaal has been acting since childhood.
Raised in Los Angeles, Gyllenhaal acted in school
plays and made his appealing film debut, playing
Billy Crystal's son in the blockbuster summer comedy
City Slickers (1991).
He next appeared with Debra Winger in A Dangerous
Woman (1993), and played
Robin Williams' son in a episode of TV's Homicide
Gyllenhaal then earned rave reviews for his emotionally
sincere performance as real life rocket builder
Homer Hickam in October Sky (1999).
Though he decided to stay in school and attend college
at Columbia University, he continued his creative
pursuits, playing in Donnie Darko (2001)
and Bubble Boy (2001).
In 2002, Gyllenhaal coincidentally played the younger
love object of choice in two comedies, appearing
as Catherine Keener’s sensitive boss in Lovely
Amazing and Jennifer Aniston’s enticing yet
disturbed co worker in The Good Girl. As further
proof that he had the acting talent, Gyllenhaal
next co starred with Dustin Hoffman and Susan Sarandon
as a young man enmeshed in his dead fiancée’s
family in Moonlight Mile.
With his star on the rise, Gyllenhaal later starred
alongside Dennis Quaid in the big summer blockbuster
The Day After Tomorrow (2004).