PROUDLY PACKING A PUNCH
Rachel McAdams’s film Southpaw has her playing another tough role. Michele Manelis finds out what draws her to gritty characters
I’d be a mess,” confesses Rachel McAdams at the thought of dating a boxer. The Canadian-born actor is promoting her upcoming drama Southpaw, in which she portrays the tough-as-nails wife of a middleweight champion, played by Jake Gyllenhaal.
Having to watch one’s significant other get beaten up for a living requires a certain kind of courage.
“I don’t know how those women do it. I think it takes incredible strength and a real backbone,” McAdams says. “I’d be worrying all the time.”
The 36-year-old’s welldocumented romantic history includes relationships with fellow co-stars Ryan Gosling ( The Notebook), Josh Lucas ( Morning Glory) and Michael Sheen ( Midnight in Paris).
And now in Southpaw she shares a palpable chemistry with her current leading man, Gyllenhaal. Unsurprisingly, their friendship has sparked rumours that they are indeed an item off-screen. “Oh, no,” she laughs. “We have known each other for years; we’re friends so we already had a foundation when we started filming and then (because of the movie) we spent a lot of time together.”
Currently single, she is characteristically tight-lipped about such matters.
“What am I looking for?” she says, repeating the question. “The big ones: kindness, humour, malleability, a sense of adventure.”
For those not well versed in the world of boxing, Southpaw is a term referring to a boxer’s stance. McAdams took time to learn the ropes and even stepped inside the ring herself.
“I think it’s a very seductive sport and I suppose we’re all drawn to the danger aspect of it,” she says. “I did some boxing on my own and worked with Jake’s trainer. He took me under his wing and although I certainly didn’t need to do that, it was very informative for my character.
“I also watched Jake box a
Jake Gyllenhaal and Rachel McAdams embrace in a scene from