Interview by Cliff Ford 1 June 2002

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Interview by Cliff Ford 1 June 2002

Post  Admin on Sun Mar 09, 2008 2:54 pm

Interview by Cliff Ford

Popstar!: The Patriot and A Knight's Tale transformed you into an international hunk and box-office star. Does being thought of as a "Hunk from Down Under" make you happy or is it a little scary?

Heath: I don't know. Listen, I really don't sit around worrying about that. I don't think that it's worth the time and the effort getting concerned about that. If it happens, It happens- it's not in my control. It's just about me taking each day and dealing with it as it happens and as it comes. I don't want to have the feeling that I have to plan the rest of my life to cater to that sort of living and that sort of life.

P: Were you worried about being the main star of A Knight's Tale?

H: No, not really. Believe it or not, if it wasn't a hit, there was a good side to that. It would be like, "I came in, had a sniff of what making a Hollywood movie was like and go out" That could have been a really good thing, it could have. So, you know there is a yin and yang to everything and that would have certainly balanced out somehow.

P: When you have a huge, big-budget movie basically riding on your shoulders, you don't seem to be bothered by how it will eventually do- in terms of box-office take. How do you not let that pressure get to you?

H: Ultimately, it's someone else's $50 million dollars, it's not my money, so I don't have the pressure of losing it. [Laughs] Basically, I'm just showing up and acting. A big-budget job doesn't really differ from a low-budget movie like Monster's Ball. There is no amount of money that can change what I do between them saying "action" and "cut".

P: For A Knight's Tale, though, it was your face that was plastered across the movie posters and billboards.

H: Well, I certainly never felt that my head should be on the poster like it was, because it was really an ensemble film. Using my face is just what the studios do to sell a movie. They find angles on how to market it and they try to find ways to create interest in it. In a way, though, it's also a way of passing a bit of pressure off of their shoulders, and saying, "The movie didn't do good, it's the kid's fault, it was his face on the poster!" [laughs] I don't read everything that people write about me - good or bad- I don't like to. I just don't listen to it or read it and I don't buy into it, especially stuff like this. It's not worth thinking about.

P: Does *anything* bother you?

H: At the moment, no, because I'm going home for a while. [laughs] For the first time in five years, I'll be spending a couple weeks there doing nothing but having fun, and I'm just really excited about that. I've been working straight for 18 months, six days a week, so I think a break is in order.

P: If you weren't an actor, what would you probably be doing right now?

H: I guess that I would be taking photos. But I hate to think that I would have to ever turn that into a profession, because it's more of a passion right now. And I prefer it being that way.

P: What is it about photography that you enjoy?

H: I don't know exactly… I guess it's the capturing of "essence". It's capturing the piece of light bouncing off of a moment. It's more documenting my life, what I feel and see. It's a visual diary. It started off as putting together a visual diary, but I also do photo art. I blow up prints, paint on them and scratch on them.

P: Have you ever thought about showing any of your photographs at a gallery?

H: No, never!

P: Why

H: Because it's just a private thing.

P: Do you collect any works from famous photographers?

H: Not yet, because I've only just got a place to call my own. I've been living out of bags for about six years, so I haven't had anywhere to put them.

P: Do you have a home in LA?

H: No, I have a place here, but it's not home. I don't think LA is a place that's anyone's home. The only reason that we're all here is work - it's a professional city.

P: I've heard a rumor that your "place" is a bona fide bachelor pad - a real "party central" kind of place. Is that true?

H: It's not...it wouldn't be a party central place. It's a very relaxed house. I have friends from Australia going in and out of there, but that's good. The house is there to be lived in, and you come home to a family of people. It certainly wouldn't be party house, but I have...certainly, since I've been away, there have been a ton of my friends there.

P: You were dating actress Heather Graham for a while, but the two of you parted ways. In retrospect, do you think that two celebrities dating one another complicates a relationship?

H: It didn't complicate anything personal about the way we felt toward each other. You can't complicate that unless well, I guess it can, but it didn't. You know what? I didn't read anything that got written about us so, that helped a lot.

P: But the two of you were constantly being photographed.

H: Yeah, it seemed so, but I've only seen a couple of those photos. But I don't really know how you deal with any of that.

P: Did they go as far as starting to jump out of trees to take photos of the two of you?

H: Not that I know of! [laughs] But, most of the time you don't even know that they're there. Now that's the scary thing. The whole process of being followed around by photographers - on your own or when you are with somebody - is really strange and invading. But I'm still working it all out, so I don't let it bother me. I really try and find humor in it all. It really is funny if you think about it.

P: I would imagine you don't swim naked in pools anymore, do you?

H: I will if I want to, you know? I certainly don't want to feel that I have to change everything that I do to cater them. I'm going to continue to be the same Heath Ledger I've always been, regardless of how "famous" I become.

P: Is it true you turned down the lead role in Spider-Man?

H: Well, we only talked about it, so it wasn't like the filmmakers offered it to me and I said No.

P: What about a role in the new Star-Wars?

H: I don't know where that came from. I had heard that rumor too, but I was never approached to do it. At least, not that I recall.

P: What do you look for when you are choosing a film project?

H: Mainly, the director. I have to be inspired by a director, and I have to really trust them, respect them and feel at ease with them. And then, of course, I have to have a feel for the material, because I never really know what I'm going to do next. I'm not someone who wants to plan my next piece out. I don't like to sit down and say, " Okay, now it's time that I should look for this, and I should go for this kind of character because this is what I need now in my career." If you start thinking that way, it tends to narrow your vision and you can block out other options. I just like to keep all my options open and just stay flexible to any suggestions. I'm never after any one particular role.

P: Do you have a favorite movie or film on DVD?

H: Oh, God, that's such a hard question. What's a movie that I've watched lately? I guess I would have to say Memento- I really liked that.

P: At 22, do you feel like you're growing up too fast? I mean, you've been working like a maniac.

H: I'm still a kid, but I have to grow up fast what I'm sitting around with someone like you, talking about my professional life. You just have to learn how to be that way. But ultimately, I'm still just a kid. I'm still a six-year old kid - I always will be and I think that it's an important thing to hold onto.

P: What's the best gift you ever got as an actual kid?

H: Freedom and trust- as I was packing my bags to leave at the age of 16.

_________________
Rest In Peace Heath Ledger
1979-2008
You will be Never forgotten

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