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Sherrybaby - Preview

Maggie Gyllenhaal in Sherrybaby

Preview by Jack Foley

2006 could well be the year of the Gyllenhaals. Jake got the year rolling with acclaimed performances in Jarhead and Brokeback Mountain.

And since then, sister Maggie has been winning rave reviews for performances in a total of six diverse productions – two of which have tackled the issue of 9/11.

In Oliver Stone’s World Trade Center, she plays a griving wife, while in Great New Wonderful, she was a pastry chef attempting to come to terms with life in post-9/11 New York.

Away from that topic, she leant her voice to animated hit Monster House and appeared in the romantic comedy drama Trust The Man (due for a UK release in a week or so).

But it’s her performance in Sundance hit Sherrybaby that has led many to predict the talented young actress could well be in line for an Oscar nomination at the very least.

An independent film, Sherrybaby follows the fortunes of Gyllenhaal’s recovering heroin addict, Sherry Swanson, after she is released from prison and struggles to find work and regain custody of her daughter.

It’s an intense role that really stretches the actress – but one that she found asked something really interesting of both herself and the audience.

Gyllenhaal believes the challenge lay in ensuring that audiences still felt sympathy and compassion for her, even though she is a flawed person.

When the film debuted at Sundance earlier this year, it led many critics to predict an Oscar nomination at the very least – a fact that would seem to suggest the actress has succeeded in achieving her aims for the role.

It’s due to open in the States in September and should follow into UK cinemas sometime soon.

But for the 28-year-old Gyllenhaal it could well provide the icing on the cake to a year that has been extremely successful – both professionally and personally.

With acclaim still ringing in her ears for a number of roles, she is also getting ready for the birth of her baby with actor-boyfriend Peter Sarsgaard.

And then there’s the small matter of preparing to support her latest role alongside Will Ferrell and Dustin Hoffman in Stranger Than Fiction – one of the autumn’s most keenly anticipated releases.