Maggie Gyllenhaal, once known as the queen of quirky indie movies, is now facing blockbuster-size fame in her new film, The Dark Knight. And with this kind of fame, comes the fashion police, critics and self-doubt. Maggie opens up about her coping skills in the tough world of Tinseltown and her challenges as a mother to 21 month-old Ramona.
On being a target for the fashion police: “Oh, my God, all the time.” After she wore a sweeping purple Peter Som gown to the Metropolitan Museum Costume Institute event last May, her outfit appeared on a “worst dressed” list, accompanied by various put-downs from the media. “I thought I looked great. Sometimes it freaks me out. I’ve been so hurt and felt so bad. People will always say mean things about you if you put yourself out there.” Her Dark Knight co-star, Aaron Eckhart, said, “Maggie’s got a lot of sass. She has very strong opinions on acting and things outside moviemaking. She’s not afraid to speak her mind.”
On preparing for the role of motherhood: “I’ve spent all my time learning how to be a mother and make a home with a child,” she says, adding that when Ramona was a newborn, “I didn’t know what I was doing. It’s so hard and requires so much work and careful thought. You just get stronger and stronger.”
On the kind of example she wants to set for Ramona: “For me it’s about getting to know my own mind,” she says of seeing a shrink on a regular basis. “It makes it easier to grow, and to grow up. I’m always thinking about what I want to take from my mother and what I don’t.”
Maggie goes on to describe the close-knit household she grew up in California with politically active parents (her father, Stephen, is a director; her mother, Naomi Foner, a screenwriter). “They were not celebrities.” She grew up knowing that a woman’s power does not come from her outer beauty, “I always felt there was something dishonest about dyeing your hair to make it more beautiful,” Gyllenhaal says — although she admits being over that now.
Source: Marie Claire
Photo: Marie Claire