Author Topic: Heath Ledger Tributes and Obituaries...  (Read 176765 times)

Offline TOoP/Bruce

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Re: Heath Ledger Tributes and Obituaries...
« Reply #140 on: February 11, 2008, 07:32:56 am »
http://www.theage.com.au/news/in-depth/he-cut-his-own-way-through/2008/01/26/1201157738740.html

'Like the hero of his early films, he cut his own way through'

January 27, 2008 [/b]

Director Neil Armfield worked with Heath Ledger on the acclaimed film Candy. Here, he recalls the quiet genius of an intuitive actor.

HEATH LEDGER did it the hard way. Most actors grow in their craft through group experiences at drama school where their voices are strengthened, their physical skills and improvisatory impulses are sharpened, their psychological grasp of character is exercised. Sometimes it isn't drama school, sometimes it's just putting on shows where quietly, inevitably, skills and instincts develop and there is a process of socialisation into the mysteries of performance and the shared experience of story.

Not for Heath. At 16 (just 12 years ago!) he was placed in front of the camera — one of the loneliest places in the world — and using instinct alone, he found his own map.

Like the hero of one of his early adventure films, he cut his own way through the forest.

By the time we met in 2003 to discuss the film of Luke Davies' novel, Candy, he knew where he was. He knew his own power. He had taken his career into his own hands by choosing the most quirky, difficult, interesting options.

Candy was going to shoot in 2004 but Brokeback Mountain came along and filming was put back a year. During that time, Heath remained passionate, charming, committed to our project. We started talking about doing Hamlet at Sydney's Belvoir St — a part that he was perhaps born to play. Weeks before production began, I was diagnosed with prostate cancer and Candy was delayed a further eight weeks to allow for my surgery and recovery.

Heath reacted immediately. He filled my house with roses.

Early rehearsals were tricky. We were coming from opposite places. I gathered all the actors in a circle to read the screenplay and tried to encourage discussion. Heath was barely audible in the read and while all the seasoned theatre actors devoured the process, talking and debating and analysing, he sat on the floor like a naughty boy in the classroom, the ADD kid in the corner, doodling monsters and mad machines on his script.

But once filming began, he blossomed. I had no idea how good he was. Heath's relationship with the camera was so instinctive, so private. But I was fearful that he wasn't "showing" enough. Wasn't letting us in to the soul of the character. "We need to see your eyes," I'd say. "You need to show more!"

He was frustrated. "I'm showing you!"

I asked: "Why don't you trust me?"

Heath's reply was: "Well, so I'll show more. Let's go and do it again. But I guarantee, you'll use the earlier take."

He was right. We did.

I knew that for this film to work, Heath would have to remain somehow likeable, and therefore interesting, throughout his character's sad history of desperate and appalling behaviour.

Heath touched this thread of optimism and skewed nobility, this core of love that holds the film together. It wasn't obvious on the set, but when we began to edit the film Heath's quiet, undemonstrative persistence was fully revealed. He knew what he was doing: there's only so much the director can do — a great actor takes responsibility for the revelation of their own performance.

There was, of course, his face: intelligent, kind, beautiful. Those eyes. That mouth. That smile. His physical agility: he was a great, natural clown.

And that rich, glorious voice. A voice the power of which he increasingly resisted. On both Candy and Brokeback Mountain, he was a nightmare for sound recordists and sound editors. "Can you give us a bit more level?" they'd plead. But Heath was adamant: "I shouldn't have to speak any louder than I would to be understood by the person I'm with."

This insight gave to Ennis Del Mar in Brokeback that sense of fearful, choked desire, and to Dan in Candy his air of humble, baffled innocence. In the cinema it makes you sit forward to catch the power of these quiet men.

And there was his glorious vulnerability: 12 years of punishing work didn't harden his spirit. He remained boyish, impulsive and volatile, which is where the animals of the paparazzi smelt his weakness and they goaded him into reaction.

Filmed on location around Sydney, Candy was marked by a series of painful humiliations for Heath that culminated in the most aggressive incident on the second last night of the shoot. We were desperately short of time shooting a street scene, which had been choreographed as a single shot. We were on our third (and best) take and from the crowd came the flash of a camera, a man called out "flash" and walked away fast up the street. The take was ruined.

In the confusion, nobody knew what had happened except Heath. He bolted up the street after the photographer, Guy Finlay, shouting. Finlay screamed, "I'll see you at home, Ledger".

Half an hour later, the paparazzo came back in his car and parked near the set, flashing his lights and tooting his horn, trying to stop filming. Heath ignored him but he was seething, hurt. It was Finlay, with Peter Carette, who squirted Heath and his partner, Michelle Williams, with water guns at the Sydney premiere of Brokeback Mountain. Again, Heath was really hurt.

In the days since Heath's death, I have become so aware of a feeling of numbed silence, of a beautiful, generous heart stopped. He was a daring artist taking fantastic leaps of imagination and faith. So much, so many years of great work lay ahead, that it makes you weep for what is not to be.

Heath's father, Kim, said last week: "Few had the pleasure of truly knowing him." I'm not one of those few. But for a while, I caught a glimpse.
« Last Edit: February 11, 2008, 03:35:07 pm by Ellemeno »
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Offline j.U.d.E.

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Re: BAFTA in memoriam
« Reply #141 on: February 11, 2008, 07:46:25 am »
I actually liked it. Heath gets more screentime than the rest. I also liked the fact that they didn't honor just anglosaxon actors but also the ones from countries like Germany, Spain or Finland and those who work behind the camera that are always invisible and unheard of. I thought it was very good.
Indeed they did. Also French actors were included. But they forgot Jean-Claude Brialy!!  :( He had no connections to Brokeback Mountain, but he was an openly gay actor and a very fine one!

I saw it on BBC yesterday. So many.. So sad..

~ "Why don't you - Why don't you just leave me be, hunh?" ~

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« Last Edit: February 11, 2008, 11:12:59 am by j. U. d. E. »
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Offline Aloysius J. Gleek

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Re: Heath Ledger Tributes and Obituaries...
« Reply #142 on: February 11, 2008, 11:03:31 am »
Thank you, Mikaela, for the link to the BAFTA memorial. The music is beautiful. And the faces in the audience--so sad.

I was also shocked and saddened, while watching the YouTube clip (watch for it at about 1:53-1:55, below)--another Brokeback Mountain family member has died this year: Marit Allen. Last night she also won a BAFTA award posthumously for her work in La Vie en Rose (the title in the US, otherwise known as La Môme) and for those who might think it another reason to watch the Oscars again this year: Marit is nominated in 2008 for La Vie/La Môme.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marit_Allen

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:

"Marit Allen was a British fashion journalist and costume designer who specialized in costumes for films. She designed the costumes for several successful Hollywood films, including Mrs. Doubtfire, Eyes Wide Shut, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Brokeback Mountain and La Vie en Rose. Her career as a film costume designer last over 33 years.

"Allen also developed a working relationship with Taiwanese film director, Ang Lee. The two collaborated to create the costumes for a number of Ang's major films, including Hulk, Brokeback Mountain and Ride with the Devil.

"Allen's other noted films included La Vie En Rose (2007), Love in the Time of Cholera (2007), Dirty Rotten Scoundrels (1988), Dead Man (1995), and Little Shop of Horrors (1986).  She worked on the costumes for a number of Nicolas Roag's movies including Don't Look Now, The Witches and Eureka.

"Allen was honored for her work with an Academy Award nomination, two Emmy nominations, as well as a Costume Designers Guild award and a BAFTA for her work on La Vie En Rose.

"Marit Allen was born in Cheshire, England on September 17, 1941 to a Norwegian mother and an English father. Marit Allen died of a brain aneurism in Sydney, Australia, on November 26, 2007. She was 66 years old. Allen was survived by three children, Lucy, Ben and Holly.

"Allen was working with director and producer George Miller on preproduction costume designs for the upcoming film Justice League of America at the time of her death in 2007. Justice League of America is scheduled for a 2010 release."



Brokeback Mountain (2005)

Costume Design by
Marit Allen

Date of Birth
17 September 1941, Cheshire, England, UK

Date of Death
26 November 2007, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
(brain aneurysm--that's awfully close to home for me... :()


Anyway, here's the clip again (at about 1:53-1:55)

BAFTA Remembers
[youtube=425,350]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TTGcboZGg0Q[/youtube]
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moremojo

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Re: Heath Ledger Tributes and Obituaries...
« Reply #143 on: February 11, 2008, 11:34:27 am »
Reporting on a radio tribute to Heath that I listened to this past Saturday. The radio station KMFA (89.5 FM), at 10:00 a.m., devoted their hour-long special show "Film Score Focus" to excerpts from the soundtracks to various films Heath appeared in, "in memory of Heath Ledger". The film soundtracks featured were The Patriot, The Four Feathers, The Brothers Grimm, and Brokeback Mountain. My favorite sound clips were those from Brokeback Mountain (all compositions excerpted were by Gustavo); I cried at "Opening", not at all unexpectedly.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2008, 04:51:29 pm by moremojo »

Offline ednbarby

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Re: BAFTA in memoriam
« Reply #144 on: February 11, 2008, 12:30:30 pm »
Also, one has to wonder about the choice of the speaking scene; it contains the most famous line from Brokeback, of course, but then comes "Why don't you - Why don't you just leave me be, hunh?" and well.... that seems to carry a message that isn't just Ennis's at this point.

I was struck by how perfect the choice of scenes/lines was, too.

Why don't they all just leave him alone, hunh?
No more beans!

Offline Meryl

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Re: BAFTA in memoriam
« Reply #145 on: February 11, 2008, 12:35:10 pm »
Yes, the BAFTAS were last night and they, like the SAGs before them and the Oscars to come, pay tribute to those who have passed away. Unlike the SAGs they've had time to do it properly, too... *sigh*

Here it is, and Heath is the last one out;




 :'(

Well done, I'm thinking. Tears in my eyes - again.  :'(

That made me cry, too.  It was a lovely sequence, and I actually forgot Heath would be in it til he came riding toward us, blonde hair flying, in that scene from "A Knight's Tale."  It just breaks my heart all over again.  :'(
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Offline Kd5000

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Re: Heath Ledger Tributes and Obituaries...
« Reply #146 on: February 11, 2008, 12:40:17 pm »
I don't think I can watch that BAFTA clip again. Just too sad.  :'( Orlando Bloom and Kevin Spacey looked quite moved.

Offline Meryl

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Re: Heath Ledger Tributes and Obituaries...
« Reply #147 on: February 11, 2008, 12:44:47 pm »

http://www.theage.com.au/news/in-depth/he-cut-his-own-way-through/2008 /01/26/1201157738740.html

Thanks for that article by Neil Armfield, Bruce.  I haven't seen "Candy" yet, and I'm glad I still have it to look forward to.  8)
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Offline Mikaela

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Re: Heath Ledger Tributes and Obituaries...
« Reply #148 on: February 11, 2008, 12:47:33 pm »
I don't think I can watch that BAFTA clip again. Just too sad.  :'( Orlando Bloom and Kevin Spacey looked quite moved.

Yes - and theirs is such a small world.... Orlando played opposite Heath in Ned Kelly, and Kevin Spacey - uhm, I've at least seen a picture of him and Heath together, so they had at least met...


The last couple of years Jake has been so visible in all these award shows, last year he presented the award for Female Lead at the BAFTAs, I think - and of course the year before that he actually won his BAFTA for Jack Twist. It's a marked difference to me that he's not to be seen anywhere.

Offline Aloysius J. Gleek

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Re: Heath Ledger Tributes and Obituaries...
« Reply #149 on: February 11, 2008, 12:48:59 pm »

Heath reacted immediately. He filled my house with roses.


I love that.

 :)
"Tu doives entendre je t'aime."
(and you know who I am...)


Cowboy Curtis (Laurence Fishburne)
and Pee-wee in the 1990 episode
"Camping Out"