Jake Gyllenhaal Was ‘Definitely Starstruck’ Meeting Brad Pitt: We Had a ‘Really Lovely Exchange’

In an interview with W Magazine, Jake Gyllenhaal recalls his awkward first encounter with Brad Pitt — and the latter's 'kindly' gesture toward him

Jake Gyllenhaal is a movie star in his own right, but he admits to being “definitely starstruck” by another A-lister earlier in his career.

Speaking with W Magazine for their 2022 Best Performances Portfolio, the 41-year-old actor recalled first meeting Brad Pitt on the set of The Good Girl, which Gyllenhaal worked on with Pitt’s then-wife Jennifer Aniston.

“I was working with Jennifer Aniston, who was his wife at the time, and there were a lot of racy scenes,” said The Guilty star. “I remember putting my hand out to shake his, and accidentally hitting the door.”

But Pitt, 58, “said, so confidently and kindly, ‘Well, you have another one. It’s all right.’ “

“It was a really lovely exchange, but I was definitely starstruck,” Gyllenhaal shared.

Jake Gyllenhaal

Gyllenhaal previously recalled working with the Friends star on the 2002 film during an interview on The Howard Stern Show this past October.

When Howard Stern asked him if it was “torture” to film love scenes with Aniston, 52, Gyllenhaal said yes because he liked her so much.

“Oh yeah, it was torture, yes it was,” he said, laughing. “But it was also not torture. I mean, come on, it was like a mix of both.”

“Weirdly, love scenes are awkward, because there are maybe 30, 50 people watching it? That doesn’t turn me on,” Gyllenhaal added. “It’s oddly mechanical. And also it’s a dance, you’re choreographing for a camera. You can get in it but it’s like a fight scene, you have to choreograph those scenes.”

In April 2016, Gyllenhaal joked to PEOPLE that working with Aniston was “rough.”

“I will say, I had a crush on her for years. And working with her was not easy,” he said of making the film with Aniston when he was 22. “I was – um, yeah. That’s all I’m going to say. It was lovely. It wasn’t hard, that’s what I would say.”

Gyllenhaal added that it wasn’t Friends that put him on Team Aniston, but the way the actress presented herself.

“Not so much Friends, but kind of her personality from afar, and movies she was in,” he said. “And some of Friends – I’m not a huge Friends fan – but who she is.”

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