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Inside Jake Gyllenhaal's drastic body transformation for Road House, including pulling a Ferrari and getting an infection

Road House, a remake of the 1989 Patrick Swayze original, is released on March 21

Jake Gyllenhaal shooting scenes for the upcoming movie Roadhouse with Conor McGregor at MGM Grand Garden Arena for UFC 285 -Jones vs Gane : Ceremonial Weigh-ins on March 3, 2023 in Las Vegas, NV, United States.
Ahad Sanwari
Ahad Sanwari - New York
Senior WriterNew York
19 March 2024
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Jake Gyllenhaal is gearing up to return to the big screen with his latest film, Road House, a retelling of the original 1989 film which starred the late Patrick Swayze.

The Oscar-nominated actor, 43, has made waves already over the course of the film's promotional cycle, particularly for his incredible transformation into a UFC fighter.

Learn more about Jake's intense effort for the film, including his months of MMA-style training, how he caught an infection during, and more on Road House

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Over a year of training

Jake's first buzz for Road House began over a year ago, when the first photos of him at UFC 285 quickly went viral and showed off just how ripped he'd really gotten.

His longtime personal trainer Jason Walsh shared in a new interview with Men's Health that they'd worked together for over a year on getting into shape for the role, but you only really see the star's peak condition on-screen.

Road House (2024) directed by Doug Liman and starring Billy Magnussen, Jake Gyllenhaal and Lukas Gage. An ex-UFC middleweight fighter ends up working at a rowdy bar in the Florida Keys where things are not as they seem.© BFA/Laura Radford/Amazon MGM Studios
Jake got into peak physical condition for the movie, upping his already strong workout plan

"The way he looked throughout the movie, there [are] peaks, right? People don't see the valleys," Jason told the publication. "They don't see the time in between the peaks, it just looks like one continuous thing. It doesn't work like that."

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Jake explained that it took "a village" to get him to peak fitness (including that one video of him pushing and pulling co-star Conor McGregor's Ferrari), working with his trainer, the stunt team, a dietician, and more.

JAKE GYLLENHAAL, SOUTHPAW, 2015,© Maximum Film/Alamy Stock Photo
The actor previously adopted a fighter's body for the 2015 film "Southpaw," in which he played a boxer

Their training program was split into several phases, starting with basic conditioning, building muscle, then one that would help him look and move like a fighter, and from then on, it was about maintaining muscle. He was shredded down all the way from 205 pounds to 184, clocking in at just five percent body fat.

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Injuries and infections

With a movie as intense as Road House, there were bound to be some incidents while filming, and the Nightcrawler star revealed that indeed there were.

US actor Jake Gyllenhaal and Irish mixed martial artist Conor McGregor attend the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) 285 mixed martial arts event at T-Mobile Arena, in Las Vegas, Nevada, on March 4, 2023.© Getty Images
His on-screen bouts with co-star Conor McGregor would result in intense filming days

On The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, Jake admitted that both he and Conor had injured other by mistake, including one moment where the Irish MMA fighter "clocked me in the face."

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When filming a fight scene at 3 AM, they were sharing notes, and, as Jake explained: "He was like, 'Yeah, that left hook looks good, but then when you do it, boom!' And he hit me by mistake."

Jake Gyllenhaal in a behind-the-scenes photo from the making of "Road House"© Instagram
Injuries became part and parcel of filming "Road House," although none proved to be extremely serious

That ended up going both ways, though. "But I, by mistake, then slammed his face with a car door. Like, legit. And he was like, [not bothered]."

On Dax Shephard's Armchair Expert podcast with Conor, he admitted that during one take, when they were fighting on a set with a lot of glass around them, the pro fighter pushed his hand onto a table, and a large shard of glass went right in.

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"My whole arm swelled up. It ended up being staph," he revealed, although thankfully added that because of how much care the team took during filming, it was resolved quickly and he suffered no major injuries.

What more do we know about Road House?

The film, which releases on Prime Video on March 21 after its South by Southwest premiere on March 8, is a reimagining of the 1989 action cult classic, with Jake playing the role of Dalton, a former UFC middleweight who becomes a bouncer at a roadhouse in the Florida Keys.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 05: Jake Gyllenhaal attends a conversation with Hannah Goldfield at 92nd Street Y on September 05, 2023 in New York City. (Photo by Dominik Bindl/Getty Images)© Getty Images
"Road House" will be released on Prime Video on March 21

Jake and Conor star in the lead roles, alongside Daniela Melchior, Lukas Gage, Post Malone, Jessica Williams, Billy Magnussen, and Darren Barnet.

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