Jake Gyllenhaal has described how his life was affected following the death of Heath Ledger, ten years after Brokeback Mountain was released. Heath died of an overdose of prescription medicine. Brokeback followed the turbulent relationship between a ranch hand, played by Ledger, and a rodeo cowboy, Gyllenhaal, after falling in love while working as sheep herders. Ledger married his on screen wife, Michelle Williams, and the pair had a daughter, Matilda. Gyllenhaal, who described Heath as his “best friend” after shooting the film in 2005, was made Matilda’s Godfather. Listening to a clip of one of their scenes in Brokeback during an appearance on NPR, Gyllenhaal reflected on his time working with Ledger. He told The Independent:
“I miss him as a human being, and I miss working with him. And what an unfortunate thing it is that we won’t be able to see the beauty of his expression.
He was incredibly special, and that doesn’t even come close to encapsulating who he is — who he was. I know, not only can this career end in a very short period of time and this or that can happen, but also that life is precious.
I think losing Heath and being a part of a family that was something like the movie, that movie we all made together, makes you see that, makes you appreciate that and hopefully moves you away from the things that really don’t matter to the things that do.”
The thought of this is heartbreaking to me. I see that last shot of Brokeback with Ennis looking at his shirt hanging on top of Jack’s in his closet and he says;
“Jack, I swear…”
(via The Independent)