Heath Ledger‘s passing is still an emotional touchstone for me. I’d always enjoyed his work and his performance in Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight was bitter-sweet; arguably the best work of his short career. A German documentary television show Too Young To Die has completed a look that examines Ledger’s life and death.
The video below is Ledger’s father, Kim Ledger, discussing Heath’s last role and the ‘Joker Diary” Heath used to prepare for the role. Heath mentioned the diary back in an interview with Empire:
“I sat around in a hotel room in London for about a month, locked myself away, formed a little diary.”
While Kim Ledger goes through the scrapbook/journal, we get a first look at revealing clippings from images from Batman comics, Stanley Kubrick‘s A Clockwork Orange, the trademark Joker playing cards and other various clowns. The Hospital Monologue is also in there.
In a chilling final note, the last page features the words “BYE BYE” scrawled across the page by Heath.
The voice over sometimes walks over what Ledger’s father is saying, making it a little hard to catch everything Heath’s father discusses. Below is what he says during the voice overs.
This is the Joker’s diary. In order to inhabit his character, he locked himself up in a hotel room for weeks. He would do that. He liked to dive into his characters, but this time he really took it up a notch.
The hospital scene is interesting because when he was a kid, his sister Kate liked to dress him up as a nurse. He was really funny like that. He also was in the movie. This is a make-up test which was done eight months before. Before the end of the shooting he wrote “bye bye” on the back of the page. It was hard to see this.