Maggie Gyllenhaal Reveals the Advice Emma Thompson Gave Her on Motherhood (Exclusive)

Maggie Gyllenhaal
Gareth Cattermole

Maggie Gyllenhaal has yet to find the perfect work/life balance, and that’s just fine with her.

Maggie Gyllenhaal has yet to find the perfect work/life balance, and that’s just fine with her.

"I think every parent knows that’s impossible. It’s always a struggle, but that’s how you learn," Gyllenhaal tells ET. "I'm a much more confident mother now than I was 12 years ago. But that’s part of the ride." 

Gyllenhaal shares two daughters -- Gloria, 7, and Ramona, 12 -- with husband Peter Sarsgaard and ET caught up with the actress-producer ahead of Mother’s Day to discuss being honored as a PowerMom by Loacker this year. 

Being a working mom in Hollywood is no easy feat, but Gyllenhaal is quick to note she has received help from some famous friends in the industry. 

"Emma Thompson once told me that 'dropping the ball' was part of being alive," Gyllenhaal recounts. "So I try to let the balls drop sometimes and see where they land, and see where I really am."

Gyllenhaal is currently in production on the third and final season of the HBO series, The Deuce. In addition to starring as Candy, a sex worker turned porn director, the Oscar-nominated actress is also a producer on the show. 

For Gyllenhaal, being able to produce a series she also stars in was a rare opportunity. "Signing on to something like The Deuce was a first for me," she reveals. "Being a producer has meant that my mind, as well as my body has always been a part of the working process," she adds. 

The Deuce tells the semi-fictional story of the porn industry in New York City during the 1970's and also stars James Franco. Gyllenhaal scored a Golden Globe nomination last year for her role in the dramatic series. 

"Candy doesn’t judge other people. It’s like a bone she doesn’t have, she’s taught me a lot about that," Gyllenhaal says. 

Though filming has already begun on the series, Gyllenhaal admits the conclusion for her character's arc has yet to be finalized.  

"We don’t quite know yet what Candy’s ending will be. It shifts and changes as we shoot and move through the season," she reveals. 

Up next for Gyllenhaal? Making her directorial debut. "I'm going to direct an adaptation of Elena Ferrante's The Lost Daughter," she shares. Gyllenhaal also wrote the screenplay for the upcoming film. 

In the meantime, Gyllenhaal is soaking up her PowerMom honor. "To be honored by a community of working mothers is both flattering and inspiring," she gushes.   

On Saturday, May 11 at 1 p.m. ET, Gyllenhaal will be honored during Loacker’s PowerMom Facebook Live, which will feature an intimate discussion and dedicated Q&A session with the actress on motherhood.