Jake Gyllenhaal Credits Team Effort for 'Road House' Physique

Behind the scenes of Jake Gyllenhaal's intense preparation

by Zain ul Abedin
Jake Gyllenhaal Credits Team Effort for 'Road House' Physique
© Greg Doherty/Getty Images

In an intimate conversation with PEOPLE at the esteemed South by Southwest (SXSW) festival in Austin, Jake Gyllenhaal delved into the rigorous preparation behind his stunning transformation for the eagerly anticipated "Road House" remake.

At 43, Gyllenhaal, renowned for his commitment to his craft, embarked on a challenging fitness and nutrition regimen to embody Elwood Dalton, a role that demanded both physical prowess and aesthetic perfection. Reflecting on his journey, Gyllenhaal contrasted his current state with his experience a decade ago while preparing for "Southpaw," another physically demanding role.

"The journey to this point wasn't solitary. It required a collective effort from a dedicated team, ensuring I remained injury-free, nutritionally balanced, and visually fit for the role," he shared. This harmonious blend of professional support was instrumental in achieving the film's demanding physical requirements.

Jason Walsh, Gyllenhaal's esteemed trainer, and Paulette Tejeda, his acclaimed chef, alongside a skilled nutritionist, played pivotal roles in this transformative journey. Their concerted efforts ensured Gyllenhaal's optimal physical condition through meticulously planned diets, rigorous training schedules, and strategic flexibility exercises.

Gyllenhaal's Transformative Journey

Walsh, in a conversation with Insider, highlighted the actor's unwavering dedication, including participation in challenging VersaClimber classes at his fitness studio. Gyllenhaal himself emphasized the disciplined regimen they adhered to, training intensively for over an hour daily before commencing the day's shoot.

This meticulous planning and adaptation based on the shooting schedule were critical in maintaining his energy levels for the film's action-packed sequences. The remake of the 1989 cult classic, originally starring Patrick Swayze, presents Gyllenhaal as a former UFC fighter turned Florida Keys roadhouse bouncer.

The film boasts an impressive ensemble cast, including Conor McGregor, Jessica Williams, Post Malone, and Daniela Melchior. Ahead of its release, Gyllenhaal paid homage to Swayze, expressing profound respect and admiration for the late actor's talent and kindness.

His heartfelt acknowledgment underscores the film's homage to its predecessor while charting its unique course. "Road House" is poised to captivate audiences with its blend of action and drama, premiering on Prime Video on March 21.

Gyllenhaal's transformative journey, supported by a "village" of professionals, not only highlights his dedication to his roles but also sets a new benchmark for actor preparation in Hollywood's physically demanding roles.