Maggie Gyllenhaal


  1. Lena Headey, Gossip, 1999.      Jake’s older sister (also boosted by films made by their father, Stephen) was nearly part of the trio ofcollege students working on (an out of control) a class project on the speed and uncontrollability of gossip.
  2. Kate Hudson, Almost Famous, 2000.   Looking for his Penny Lane groupie in his semi-autobiographical look back to his Rolling Stone reporter daze, auteur Cameron Crowe saw 48 of LA’s bright young things… Christina Applegate, Selma Blair, Lara Flynn Boyle, Neve Campbell, Jennifer Connelly, Claire Danes, Cameron Diaz, Kirsten Dunst, Eliza Dushku, Jenna Elfman, Jennie Garth, Maggie Gyllenhal, Alyson Hannigan, Angie Harmon, Anne Heche, Katherine Heigl, Jordan Ladd, Kimberly McCullough (busier as a TV director these days, High School Musical: The Musical – The Series, etc), Rose McGowan, Bridget Moynahan, Brittany Murphy, Gwyneth Paltrow, Laura Prepon, Lindsay Price, Christina Ricci, Rebecca Romijn, Winona Ryder, Chloë Sevigny, Marley Shelton Tori Spelling, Mena Suvari, Uma Thurman, Liv Tyler, Lark Voorhies.  Plus the English Saffron Burrows, Anna Friel, Thandiwe Newton and Rachel Weisz, Madrid’s Penélope Cruz, the French Charlotte Gainsbourg, Canada’s Natasha Henstridge, Ukrainian Milla Jovovich, Scottish Kelly Macdonald, Israeli Natalie Portman, German Franka Potente, Australian Peta Wilson and Welsh Catherine Zeta-Jones.  And the winner, Canada’s Sarah Polley, simply split. (Silly girl).  Crowe then chose Kate  (previously booked  for Anita) because “she seemed more like a free spirit.”  But, but, but… Chloë  was the freest spirit in all Hollywood. As she proved two years later in The Brown Bunny… in a way the others would never have dared.
  3. Melanie Lynskey, Shattered Glass, 2003.   Maggie had to quit being Amy Brand due to other commitments.  She later co-starred with Lynskeyin This Must Be The Place, 2009.

  4. Nicole Kidman, Bewitched, 2004.      
    For inexplicable reasons, Hollywood kept trying to make a movie out of the  1968-1972 ABC sitcom about a good-looking witch and a Dagwood husband.  In 1993, Penny Marshall was going to direct Meryl Streep as Samantha, then passed the reins to Ted Bissell and he died in 1996 when his Richard Curtis script was planned as Melanie Griffths’ comeback.  Nora Ephron co-wrote and directed this lumbering version about an ego-driven actor trying to save his career with a Bewitched re-hash, but with the emphasis on him (of course) as Darrin, rather than the unknown he chose for Samatha because she can wiggle her nose…  (You didn’t need a nose to know it stank).  Over the years, 37 other ladies were on the Samantha wish-list. Take a deep breath… Kate Beckinsale, Sandra Bullock, Jennifer Connelly, Cameron Diaz, Heather Graham, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Angelina Jolie, Ashley Judd, Julianne Moore, Gwyneth Paltrow, Michelle Pfeiffer, Molly Ringwald, Meg Ryan, Winona Ryder, Brooke Shields, Charlize Theron, Naomi Watts, Renee Zellweger.  Plus seven Oscar-winners:  Kim Basinger, Tatum O’Neal, Julia Roberts, Meryl Streep, Hilary Swank, Charlize Theron, Reese Witherspoon… two Friends: Jennifer Aniston and Lisa Kudrow…eleven other TV stars: Christina Applegate, Patricia Arquette, Kristin Davis, Teri Hatcher, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Helen Hunt, Jenny McCarthy, Alyssa Milano, Brittany Murphy, Sarah Jessica Parker, Alicia Silverstone… even  Drew Barrymore and Uma Thurman, who had already re-kindled Charlie’s Angels and The Avengers.

  5. Christina Applegate, Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy,  2003.   Tried out for Veronica… aka  the co-anchor “diversity” required by the boss of the 70s’ San Diego KVWN Channel 4 Newsman’s biopic.  Says Burgundy (licence plate: IM #1): “I’ll give this little cookie an hour before we’re doing the no-pants dance.”
  6. Mira Kirshner, The Black Dahlia, 2005.       “I want to be put in a position that I have to be brave to do the project.”  Brian De Palma is never brave – certainly never in  casting.  And this was the end of De Palma!  He took James Ellroy’s masterpiece and chopped it up as badly as the pooor 1947 victim of a mutilation murder in LA, unsolved to this day.  Her name was Elizabeth (Becky, Besty, Betty, Liz) Short, chasing fame among hundreds of other girls in  Hollywood except she landed up cut in half… Kershner had read the book and looked much like the victim. She was De Palma’s only perfect casting – he fund her playing opposite the guys he was testing. Rolling Stone critic Peter Travers buried the filmDe Palma throws everything at the screen, but almost nothing sticks.”The tragedy is that David Fincher gave up his three hour, black-white plan when convinced he could never make it exactlythe way he sas it in his head.
  7. Maria Bello, The Private Lives of Pippa Lee, 2008.      A new schedule stretched Maggie’s two week schedule to five, clashing with her planned departure for  Britain with Peter Sarsgaard and their new baby. Bello took over as the titular Robin Wright’s lookalike mother (in flashbacks. of course… as Robin in 355 days older than Maria) in third film of Arthur Miller’s  daughter Rebecca Miller. Aka Mrs Daniel Day-Lewis.
  8. Greta Gerwig, Greenberg, 2009.    Director Noel Baumbach first announced Amy Adams and Mark Ruffalo as the New Yorker housesitters of his brother’s LA home. When Amy quit, he considered Maggie before sttling on Greta  to partner Ben Stiller. This is where Noel Baumbach succeeded Joe Swanberg as Gerwig’s director and mentor – and we nevcr heard of Joe again in her interviews. .
  9. Taylor Schilling, Atlas Shrugged: Part 12010.
  10. Hilary Swank, The Resident, 2010.   Finnish director Antti Jokinen  told  his national TV how Maggie and Jessica Alba were first in contention for Dr Juliet Deveraux – in Christopher Lee’s first Hammer film for 36 years.
  11. Winona Ryder, The Iceman, 2011.     Poor Winona, she didn’t use to have to wait for someone to be pregnant in order to win a role… When Maggie had to bow out, Israeli director Ariel Vromen called Winona in to play the virtuous Catholic wife of the Polish-American serial killer Richard Kuklinski. (Maggie had a daughter: Gloria).
  12. Emily Blunt, Mary Poppins Returns, 2017.   When Walt Disney made the first Poppins, he mused over Bette Davis, Angela Lansbury or Mary Martin for Mary but by 1963, he had only one star in mind. Julie Andrews. For this reboot, Disney suits went through no less than 37 contenders… Two Desperate Housewives:Kristin Davis, Teri Hatcher. Two Friends:Jennifer Aniston, Lisa Kudrow. Two Brat Packers: Molly Ringwald, Winona Ryder.  Two of the three authors of The Penis Song: Christina Aplegate, Cameron Diaz. Three sirens: Kim Basinger, Heather Graham Uma Thurman. Four ex-child stars: Drew Barrymore, Alyssa Milano, Tatum O’Neal, Brooke Shields. Ten Oscar-winners: Sandra Bullock, Helen Hunt, Angelina Jolie, Julianne Moore, Tatum O‘Neal, Julia Roberts, Hilary Swank, Charlize Theron, Reese Witherspoon, Renée Zellweger. Plus: Patricia Arquette, Melanie Griffith, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Ashley Judd, Gwyneth Paltrow, Sarah Jessica Parker, Michelle Peiffer, Meg Ryan, Alicia Silverstone, Naomi Watts. But just two Brits: Kate Beckinsale  – and the winning Emily.







 Birth year: Death year: Other name: Casting Calls:  12