Jake Gyllenhaal Says Being Legally Blind Is 'Advantageous' to His Career

The ‘Presumed Innocent’ star says that “I can be with myself” before putting on his corrective lenses

<p>Walter McBride/WireImage</p> Jack Gyllenhaal in glasses.

Walter McBride/WireImage

Jack Gyllenhaal in glasses.

Jake Gyllenhaal can’t see in the mornings — and it’s not just because he needs to open the shades or grab a cup of coffee.

The actor — who stars in the new Apple TV+ series, Presumed Innocent — is legally blind, he tells The Hollywood Reporter in its new issue.

However, not being able to see can have its perks, the actor, 43, says.

“I like to think it’s advantageous,” he tells the outlet. “I’ve never known anything else. When I can’t see in the morning, before I put on my glasses, it’s a place where I can be with myself.”

<p>Alamy</p> Jack Gyllenhaal in 'Velvet Buzzsaw.'


Jack Gyllenhaal in 'Velvet Buzzsaw.'

“Legal blindness means your central visual acuity — the part of your vision that allows you to see straight ahead — is 20/200 or less in your better eye when wearing corrective lenses,” Verywell Health explains. “With 20/200 vision, you can see at 20 feet what a person with 20/20 vision sees at 200 feet.”

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Gyllenhaal’s vision is 20/1250 — meaning, what someone can see at 1250 feet, he can see at 20 feet.

Related: Jake Gyllenhaal Is Returning for a Road House Sequel After the Remake Becomes a Streaming Hit

<p> Apple TV+</p> Jake Gyllenhaal in 'Presumed Innocent'

Apple TV+

Jake Gyllenhaal in 'Presumed Innocent'

He’s used his visual impairment to his advantage, especially during scenes that required a highly emotional reaction.

In 2015’s sports drama Southpaw, he removed his lenses to force himself to listen more closely in a dramatic scene, he told THR.

As for how he wears his glasses in his new series Presumed Innocent, he says he takes a cue from his godfather, the late Paul Newman, who would often tuck them into his shirt.

Related: Jake Gyllenhaal Says ‘Exercise Always Helped Me Get Through’ Ahead of Road House Release

“He also wore them hanging from his ear and stuff like that,” Gyllenhaal says.

THR described his lenses as “Coke bottle” glasses due to their thickness, and the actor, who has been wearing corrective lenses since he was around 6 years old, says he was also born with a lazy eye that naturally resolved.

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