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WATCH: Jake Gyllenhaal's Brokeback Mountain Memories, 10 Years Later

WATCH: Jake Gyllenhaal's Brokeback Mountain Memories, 10 Years Later


The actor called making the landmark film 'an interesting journey to go on to learn about that world.'

A decade has come and gone since Jake Gyllenhaal shared an on-screen kiss with the late Heath Ledger in Brokeback Mountain, the film that's been called a "watershed moment" in mainstream moviemaking.

Now Gyllenhaal is starring in a new film, Southpaw, about a lightweight champion boxer who's suffering from punch-drunk syndrome. Recently he sat down with BET to promote that movie and share memories of Brokeback Mountain.

When it premiered 10 years ago, The Advocate called it "exquisite," "exceptional," and a "haunting and practically perfect romance." Others dubbed it "the gay cowboy movie," but at its heart, it was a love story.

Gyllenhaal said he's "really proud of Brokeback Mountain and everything it had to say." Critics and reporters at the time called it "daring" and "risky" for him and Ledger -- two prominent leading men -- to play gay roles, but he says Hollywood has adjusted. "I think playing a role and living a life are two very different things," he told BET. "I think telling stories, and all different stories, is what makes acting so great."

Brokeback Mountain is set in the 1960s and '70s, and centers on the relationship between two closeted gay men in the American West. The film, based on a short story by Annie Proulx, earned Ledger an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor and Gyllenhaal one for Best Supporting Actor. It was nominated for Best Picture and won Oscars for director Ang Lee, screenwriters Larry McMurtry and Diana Ossana, and composer Gustavo Santaollala.

As an actor famous for playing a gay man, Gyllenhaal was asked for his reaction to last month's Supreme Court ruling for nationwide marriage equality:

"When I heard about the news I thought, wow, how far we've come in a decade. And how far we have to go in so many things. But I think hopefully something like that in terms of -- the resistance of society and seeing that it's possible to change was such an amazing thing. I remember thinking, my mom sent me the decision. And how it was written, I thought it was so beautiful. And she said it's all about love. ... And to know that [love] wins out sometimes is an inspiration to me."

Watch the video of Gyllenhaal's interview below; his segment starts at 1:17.

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Majick Tadepa