Jake Gyllenhaal to make U.S. stage debut Off-Broadway Jake Gyllenhaal to make U.S. stage debut Off-Broadway
Ready to take his skills back to the stage, Oscar nominee Jake Gyllenhaal will perform this fall in the American premier of Nick Payne’s... Jake Gyllenhaal to make U.S. stage debut Off-Broadway

Ready to take his skills back to the stage, Oscar nominee Jake Gyllenhaal will perform this fall in the American premier of Nick Payne’s “If There Is I Haven’t Found It Yet”. The show, a Roundabout Theatre Company production, will open September 20, after one month of previews starting August 24, at Off-Broadway’s Laura Pels Theatre. The show will run for a short time, through November 25.

This performance marks Gyllenhaal’s American stage debut. He was last seen on stage a decade prior in London’s West End production of Kenneth Lonergan’s “This Is Our Youth.”

Known for his work in film, Gyllenhaal began his screen career in 1991 at the age of 11, when he appeared in City Slickers. He has since been seen in over 20 productions, including October Sky, Donnie Darko, Bubble Boy, The Day After Tomorrow, Brokeback Mountain, and most recently, Love and Other Drugs.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, his next screen appearance will be End of Watch, a Los Angeles cop drama by David Ayers. Along with Gyllenhaal, the film will star Michael Peña, Anna Kendrick, and America Ferrera. Gyllenhaal received an Academy Award nomination for his performance in Brokeback Mountain as well as a Golden Globe nomination for Love and Other Drugs.

Roundabout describes the show as, “Provocative, insightful and laced with fresh humor,” writes Kenneth Jones of Playbill.com.

Gyllenhaal plays foul-mouthed, estranged uncle Terry, whose attitude allows him to bond with his 15-year-old niece, Anna, who is bullied for her weight. His unexpected arrival sends the family into a tailspin, “as the whole family wonders what — or who — really needs saving?”

Patrick Healy of the New York Times feels that this character suits Gyllenhaal well. “A play about a young, lost, broken-hearted antihero, with a knack for empathy but a little clueless about life’s problems? Paging Jake Gyllenhaal!”

Todd Haimes, Roundabout’s artistic director, describes Gyllenhaal’s excitement about the show. “Jake Gyllenhaal loves this play and the role of Terry, and I couldn’t be happier that he has chosen to make his American stage debut with us.” Haimes is thrilled to be working with Nick Payne’s work, and “introduce him to American audiences,” he told Playbill.com.

“If There Is I Haven’t Found It Yet” opened in 2009 at the Bush Theatre in England, and will now be making its United States debut. The show will be directed by Michael Longhurst, who most recently directed Payne’s “Constellations”. The cast will consist of Gyllenhaal plus three additional actors and a design team that has yet to be announced.

David Rooney of The Hollywood Reporter describes the show as “a comic drama…about an off-kilter family who knows what the problems are, but not how to fix them.” The underlying subject matter may be heavy, but many audience members, families and individuals, will likely be able to relate to the themes and overarching cultural issues portrayed in this comedic production.

The next play in the Roundabout Underground series of new plays is “Bad Jews,” according to the New York Times. This show was written by Joshua Elias Harman, and will be directed by David Aukin.