To say Jake Gyllenhaal is proud of his role as a boxer in his upcoming movie Southpaw is an understatement, but don’t ask him to do it again.
In the process of getting absolutely ripped for his role, the Oscar-nominated actor, 34, said his respect for boxers skyrocketed.
“The amount of time you have to put into it, the sacrifice that you put into your body, it’s not something that you’re eager to do again,” he told PEOPLE. “It’s a huge commitment.”
All the blood, sweat and tears [literally] can be seen in the film.
“One thing I know, and we always talk about, is whatever you put into your character, how much commitment you have to put into the movie, all of that energy is in the film,” he said. “I can feel that energy when people see the film.”
On Saturday, Gyllenhaal saw the pros do it, as he sat ringside at the Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Manny Pacquiao fight in Las Vegas, a fight that Mayweather won.
Even after two workouts a day and too many sparring sessions to count, Gyllenhaal still feels like what he did pales in comparison to what people do in their real lives.
“I hate to be so thoughtful,” he said, “but I would say when you see what people really do when you’re playing a character – I’ve had the opportunity to play a police officer, I’ve had the opportunity to play a sociopath, I’ve had the opportunity to play military, a boxer – and particularly the jobs in the military and the jobs that are physical like this, you’re an actor.
“There is nothing hard compared to what the people do for real.”