Maggie Gyllenhaal’s Husband Says Being Directed By Her In Sex Scene Was ‘Gratifying’

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·3-min read
Maggie Gyllenhaal’s Husband Says Being Directed By Her In Sex Scene Was ‘Gratifying’
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  • Maggie Gyllenhaal
    Maggie Gyllenhaal
    American actress
  • Peter Sarsgaard
    Peter Sarsgaard
    American actor (1971-)

Maggie Gyllenhaal has been married to actor Peter Sarsgaard since 2009, and the pair have two daughters together – Ramona, 15 and Gloria, nine.

Recently, they worked together on psychological drama The Lost Daughter, as 44-year-old Gyllenhaal, who directed the film, cast her husband in a dominant role.

This drama - that sees Gyllenhaal nominated for a 'Best Director' award at this year's Golden Globes - also has a sex scene involving Sarsgaard and Jessie Buckley, who plays the younger version of protagonist Leda in the film, a woman who grows an obsession with young mother Nina (Johnson).

While constantly observing Nina, it triggers difficult memories she had with her own kids.

The scene in question is part of many showing Buckley and Sarsgaard's on-screen characters as they navigate parenthood and a tense relationship.

Photo credit: Jim Spellman - Getty Images
Photo credit: Jim Spellman - Getty Images

When speaking to NME about having his wife direct him in a sex scene, 50-year-old Sarsgaard jokingly said: 'I've been recommending this to absolutely everyone. I don't think there's any relationship that wouldn't be helped by it!'

'The nice thing about it is seeing someone else adore your spouse. The way that these two characters connect is not just about sex, it's about the mind. That's really gratifying.'

And he also recalled a time watching his own wife act out a romantic scene.

'I once saw an actor kiss my wife in a movie and it drove me crazy because he had his hand in his pocket. I was like, that's my wife and he had his hand in his pocket like he was looking for his keys while he was kissing her? This woman is incredible — show it!' he said.

When speaking to The View in December. Gyllenhaal, too, reflected on how she felt about the sex scene in the film, which stars ELLE UK cover star Dakota Johnson and The Crown alumni Olivia Coleman.

Photo credit: Getty Images
Photo credit: Getty Images

'I did think at first, "Maybe it's not a great idea," and then I was like, "I've been with my husband for a long time. We've been through so much. I know my husband loves me. Who could do this better than him?" Really, nobody,' she recalled.

Gyllenhaal, who also wrote the film that's based on a novel by Elena Ferrante, echoed her husband thoughts, saying: 'The sexuality, it's strange; it's a weird part of our job.

'The thing that makes the scene hot, I think, is that he's hot for her mind — her mind. What is sexier than that? He's like, "I am into your mind." ... Really, that kind of sexy is irresistible.'

Previously speaking to The Telegraph, The Honourable Woman actor said: 'My husband is playing the object of desire for this brilliant, beautiful young actress?’

She later added: 'I mean, he is irresistible, which is exactly what the character needs to be. So I told myself, it’s going to be fine.'

Photo credit: Marc Piasecki - Getty Images
Photo credit: Marc Piasecki - Getty Images

As for how she and Sarsgaard have managed their work schedules with two daughters, she previously said of her husband at the Gotham awards: 'I really have respect for him... He was holding up the family side of things, and that is invaluable. I could not have made this film without that. There are so many examples of women gracefully, intelligently supporting their husbands and there are so few examples of men doing that for their wives. He's a really incredible example of that.'

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