Heath Ledger and the Dark Knight

Now that the Dark Knight has broken all records at the BO, Heath left a legacy that is unforgettable. Angels do that. They visit us for short periods of time and cause huge impact on our consciousness. I always told Heath he was an ancient soul in a very young mind, a very young body. Angels, or Ancient Souls are never comfortable trapped in their human selves. They will make you restless and the need for honest creative expression of the deepest nature is a driving force. For those of you that knew his music, the other person that had that quality was Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan. Who I did Bandit Queen with.
My screen test with Heath for Four Feathers lasted a whole day. He would often call me down the years and laugh his deep laughter, and remember that day with a lot of affection . It was a day of deep exploration between an actor and a director of each other…..


.. it was also the day I discovered the deeper wisdom of Heath’s soul. He was, after all, only 21.
I had decided to ask him perform a love scene from the film with a very accomplished actress who had just come to help out. First I made him sit in one place so he could not escape into any body language. Neither could the girl. I needed to see what happened to his eyes.
We then spoke of love and of true love. We spoke of Wisdom and what it really meant. We spoke of the meaning of true courage was based on how you lived. Not on dying a hero’s death on the battlefield. And then we spoke of how when you are really young love was about needing. Love was about taking. Love was about hunger. But as one gathers wisdom, love becomes about giving. The more you gave, the stronger you became.
And then I made him perform the scene. First as a very young man that he was. Full of joy, anticipation and yearning. Impatient, eager and impetuous. This was the Heath we had seen. Why he was such a star amongst teenagers. He was sexy and thoroughly endearing.
But then I changed the nature of the scene. Not the dialogue. Not even the body postures. But asked Heath to perform it with Wisdom. Perform it older. Stiller. With greater strength, as a young man who had come to terms with himself and his place in the Universe.
And the transformation was fascinating and hypnotic. His eyes changed. His voice changed. His breathing changed. He began to exude strength. And it was then in his eyes I saw the old soul appear. It was then that I knew we were in the presence of not only a great actor, but a human being with potential to affect the consciousness of people.
Shekhar

35 Responses to “Heath Ledger and the Dark Knight”

  1. Himanshu says:

    Dear Shekhar,
    Without doubt Heath’s performance is truly breathtaking. Hyderabad has one of the best IMAX theaters in the world and it was such a amazing experience to see the film on the huge screen yesterday. It was a unique feeling where the superhero as well as the joker seem completely a part of the city and not superhuman characters in the land of humans. All actors have done a great job and Christopher Nolan has done amazing direction. I will see it again in a few days to better understand the quality of acting, enjoy the score more and just immerse myself in the joy of film when I see it again. Heath is truly unique – I think he may have had some premonition that propelled him to give such an out of the world performance. What a joy!
    Best Regards,
    Himanshu

  2. James Phelan says:

    Thank you Shekhar for sharing with us more of your unique memories of Heath. I, like so many others around the world, are thankful that so much of his humanity is there on screen for us to re-live. To me, films, like novels, are a means by which we can learn and experience life beyond the limits of our own reality. Certainly Heath was a master teacher for us all; he truly did have an old and wise soul. I do not know when I will have the courage to see the Dark Knight. The loss of Heath is still an open wound, and when I see him on screen it comes with a lead weight in the stomach.
    Thank you again for making Four Feathers such a human story, and not some boys own adventure which I’m sure the studio would have pushed hard for.

  3. Gopi says:

    You are right Shekhar, he is one of very few actors who have convinced in roles older than their true age (Im Not There, Brokeback Mountain). Sign of a great actor and an older soul.
    His performance as the joker was truly spiritual. Every time he came on screen, my heart raised!! Im proud to say, he comes from the same city of Perth in Australia as me!
    May his soul rest in peace!

  4. anand says:

    I agree, he has that flair, and now in the dark knight, he was out of this world, and know what..it is now ranked #1 on IMDB Top 250.

  5. Neel says:

    Shekhar- would you be able to upload Heath’s screen test ? it would be a tribute to him and also a joy to watch it.

  6. Mehul Rahul says:

    Hey Shekhar,
    Couldn’t find anything appropriate to write in the previous posts..
    Heath Ledger…I spent 3.5 yrs in Melbourne…got exposed to aussie culture…
    Heath is definetly missed in AU and everywhere in the world where good cinema is appreciated.
    I was a little apprehensive to see “The Dark Knight” thinking that may be I will be biast and since Heath is no longer with us…I will end up giving his performance an added weightage…well it didn’t happen…comparison with Jack Nicholson’s joker is unavoidable…
    Heath’s joker was sinister…Wise…but evil…Jack’s joker was well just a naughty joker…
    The whole feel of the movie was incredible..direction was emaculate…
    Heath’s performance made joker what he was mean’t to be..probably the wisest of all Batman Villains..an unpredictable evil power..he made it all come real..
    Too good.. Here’s to Heath..
    Cheers Mate !

  7. Koizen says:

    What a performance!
    its not Batman but Joker that audience are rooting for…and I did not even know who this guy is till I read all above posts! I was curious why ‘Dark Knight’ got 4 and half stars by critics, went to cinema hall and saw the story unfold. Amazing!
    In one particular scene, Joker is in jail and then everyone claps (including Joker) the way he claps above his chest and his eyes so straight, one cant help but to love this character.
    Its very interesting how Shekhar Kapur looks at actors and how he on the job comes up with ideas to take the best performance. There is so much to learn because its not the performance that Shekharji takes out, but also the way he looks at actors potential dynamics to an extent that it becomes spiritual way of enacting a character.
    There is only one Shekhar Kapur!
    P.S: Dear Shekhar ji, why dont you put Heath’s screentest onto a video already told by Neel?

  8. Dave Han says:

    I highly doubt any director has the rights over any screen test/footage. We’d all love to see more Heath, but it’s in the hands of the movie studios.
    Thanks for the insight on Heath. His Joker was simply astonishing and one of the best villains ever put on celluloid. It pains me to think how incredible his career would have been.

  9. metaphorme says:

    Shekhar,
    I bet Heath had a lot of planets in the twelfth house.
    I will have to watch this movie. I can then, and only then, give you my biased opinion.
    I’m sorry for the loss of your friend. I wish I could say something better than that, but there isn’t really anything else.

  10. metaphorme says:

    Hey, I missed visiting your site! Take care Shekhar.

  11. Lori says:

    Dear Shekhar
    I saw The Dark Knight on Sunday and I was even more blown away than expected by the performance given by this actor for whom I gain more creative respect with each film I see. My friend told me afterwards, ” I kept looking for Heath in that character but I couldn’t see him anywhere.” I plan to see this film again in a few weeks, after I have had time to soak it all in (plus our seats were not the best).
    I am still trying to derive my own meaning out of all of this; I never thought I was “one of those people” who would take the loss of an actor so hard….I tell myself I have no right, I didn’t know him, I’m being ridiculous. Yet the day before his death my brother was watching TV in the next room, and I thought I heard Heath’s line about beer-flavored nipples (lol) from 10 Things I Hate About You. I thought the film was on TV and went into his room….he was watching a different film on DVD. I keep going back to that; what did it mean? I am not prone to hearing voices; this is the only time I have had such an experience. Just typing it sounds crazy, but I had to get it out there. None of this makes sense to me, especially why I am affected so, but I believe, to quote The Beatles, “And when the broken hearted people living in the world agree, there will be an answer, let it be.”

  12. Alexa says:

    Oh Shekhar, thank you for posting this! I have tears in my eyes as I read it. I have always loved Heath and these past few days have been especially difficult, for obvious reasons. I often reread your first two blogs about Heath because they help to comfort me. I’ve been struggling with the question as to why this had to happen to him, to find some deeper meaning in it, and my mind just can’t find an answer. I wonder if he knows how much he is loved an missed. It may sound silly, but I wish I just could know he was ok, wherever he is. I so enjoy reading about him and every time I find out something new, I grow to love him more and more. You were so blessed to have known him personally.

  13. Claudia says:

    Than you for shared you feelings and the knwoleged of had met Heath.
    I’m writing something to honour him, and I need more friends’ feelings and knwoleged about him, to complete my words.
    Kisses and hugs from Spain.
    ;P

  14. Navin says:

    Watched The Dark Knight a little while ago. Brilliant film. Must watch. Was wondering if the morbid character of The Joker got to him? Has the cause of his death been established?
    Have there been any incidents where an actor has got so involved with the character s/he’s playing at the time, that it affects his/her real life? Scary thought.
    Cheers!

  15. Alexa says:

    Navin, although I did not know Heath personally, I have been a fan for years. Heath was an actor, and a very good one. I also know what his costars have said about his role, and what Heath himself had said in interviews. He said that this role was the one he had the most fun playing. Although the role was dark, it was also very funny, and one can see that Heath had a blast playing the Joker. I am just tired of people thinking that this role had anything to do with his passing, so I just had to put in my two cents.

  16. Elisa says:

    Dear Shekhar
    I’ve been a Heath fan for a long time. I firstly saw him in A Kight’s Tale…and after that I followed all his carrier. I’ve just seen The Dark Knight, his performance there was amazing! I could hardly recognise him and I’m not talking about the make up…the way he chose the voice, the movements, the eyes, everything was perfect. But now I don’t want to talk about the actor but about the man. I never met him even if I wanted to, nor he knew me…so I asked myself many times why did I take to heart this death? The only answer I found was, as you say, that he was such a great soul. He touched so many hearts all over the world…and he’s been an inspiration also for me: some years ago I and a friend of mine decided to write a screenplay and we thought at some actors who could play that roles…but one of the characters was indeed Heath! I’ve never believed that our screenplay could have a future, but at least I’d had liked him to read it! Now of course the hopes are even less…
    Thank you very much for your words about Heath, they’ve been very helpful when the grief was stronger.
    PS sorry for my bad English, I’m from Italy!
    Best regards,
    Elisa

  17. dear bloke says:

    Mr.Shekar,
    i think Heath is a matured actor,even his resume says that, five Oscar nominations,but there is something in his very personal nature that is mystique , he does not show of as extrovert.he is 100% introvert.In general ,Introvert actors ,have highly professional approach in what ever job they do.Dark night was one among the best performances of Heath .In the whole movie there is only a tiny bit where you see make-up free face of Heath.

  18. AJ says:

    Last night at Council meeting City approved full time sustainability cordinator during the slow economy and …
    This city is ahead of the world in Global Warming concerns and City cares…
    Sunnyvale is the best city in Bay area :
    Popular Science magazine names Sunnyvale the 13th Greenest City in America
    Best Places to Live – Money’s list of America’s best small cities
    http://money.cnn.com/magazines/moneymag/bplive/2008/snapshots/PL0677000.html

  19. AJ says:

    Heath Ledger and Shekhar Kapur are rare gifts and jewels in the crown of golden earth, we are visiting and part of this temporary home in this life.
    We wish “Paani” is taking better shape and is going to be a world hit…
    World will be once again proud of your talent.
    With Best Wishes to you and the team …

  20. metaphorme says:

    I’m sorry. I admit my last statement was colored by my research for an article that had nothing to do with Heath (as far as finding criticism boring).
    But what I find boring is the fact that critics don’t understand where they are coming from. Why is that?
    Why can’t they recognize we all have biases and prejudices? Journalists are not objective portrayers of truth!
    I was always taught otherwise.
    All my illusions are blowing up and I really don’t like it. It’s very uncomfortable.

  21. Harb says:

    [And then we spoke of how when you are really young love was about needing. Love was about taking. Love was about hunger. But as one gathers wisdom, love becomes about giving. The more you gave, the stronger you became.] – Shekhar
    When young we are guided by The Will to Power. when old we are guided by the Will to be Free (Mukti, Nirvana, in other words).
    West in general is guided by the Will to Power, while East in general is guided by the Will to be Free. It is because the global cultural cycle emerges from the side of West and ends in the side of East.

  22. brahmastra says:

    Harb,
    As usual, a profound point. There are a lot of implications in that last statement you made, whether you know it or not. Does it mean that the east is composed of a higher number of older souls than the west? I’ve thought so for a long time..it explains to a great extent the cultural divide which is progressively disappearing though.
    About the batman movie, it was quite fragmented in message and content, but the joker was good. I couldn’t help but try to imagine if Heath succumbed to the pressure of all this accomplishment. It’s ok, he’ll learn to let go of doership in his next life.

  23. Aamir Hasan says:

    Dear Shekhar,
    I am a poet and a writer and wish to put forward a script for your consideration
    The story revolves around a powerful political family…and our national animal – Tiger.
    Tigers…does the nation understand what we are losing…can something be done to stop poaching…how are forests and our future related to tigers?
    Two strong headed cousins…One who loves tigers & forests and wants to conserve them…One wants to ruthlessly plunder them for selfish reasons…can one brother stop another?
    A father and a son…battle of ideas and ideals…who convinces the other?
    A mother and a son…keeping the child away from home…does maternal love demands sacrifice?
    A husband and wife…what if a woman marries for love and then hates for a reason…what to do if the child’s future is at stake…leave or stay….or to fake & act all life?
    An uncle and a nephew…can a man trusts someone more than his own blood…how about passing on power…son or nephew…what can be the cost of betrayal?
    What happens when a terrible secret of the family is revealed…does it changes relationships and lives for ever?
    Can a childhood incident haunt all life…in the dreams?
    Friendship…is it the most important part of life?
    Love…can a person leave a comfortable life and move towards a family, place, country…that is unknown?
    How far can one go for an aim…for the love of wild life…facing threatening calls…facing death?
    The nexus between politics, money, power, international smuggling and Tigers…are we as a nation prepared to face the problem…and save the tiger?
    Please reply or contact if you are interested in this script and want to bring it on the screen. Someone has to; before it is too late for the Big Cat.
    Thanks,
    Aamir

  24. Rosa says:

    Dear Shekhar,
    First of all I would like to express my sincerest thank you for sharing your story about Heath. It gave me great joy to read it. I am also very grateful I’m getting a chance to personally express my appreciation to you for your wonderful film, The Four Feathers, which I consider a masterpiece and definitely one of my all-time favourite movies. It touched my soul on a very deep level. I think you played a very important role in Heath’s life. I sense that you contributed to a major awakening in him, which presented a stepping stone for greater things to come in his life. Heath has had a huge influence in my personal life, for which I will be eternally grateful. I never had the privilege to meet him in person but I am so happy I got to enjoy his immense talent and warmhearted soul by watching his movies, reading his interviews and articles and viewing many photos and videos. I find myself insatiably hungry for more… I heard that Four Feathers was initially about 5 hours long and got edited down to less than half. It would mean the world to me to see the film in its original whole length. I would also love to see any deleted scenes of any kind you might have on file. Is there any chance this could happen?? Once again, thank you so very much for everything you have done…
    Warmest regards
    Rosa

  25. Sherry says:

    Dear Shekhar,
    I would like to say thank you for your insight on Heath, its very nice for a fan to get this rare read from a friend!
    I was thinking about his film “The Dark Knight” and I wanted to put this out there because I know no other way and maybe if we get people talking someone from Warner Bros will read this and do something…Since this film is breaking all kinds of records at the BO and in the past they’ve been know to give their actors HUGE bonus and since Heath is no longer here WHY not publicly give that bonus to his beloved daughter? it would be a wonderful gestor for that company to do for there Star and doing this come out smelling more like a Rose…..It would also be so beneficial for all the party’s involved and with all the talk about his Will, it sure would make life a little easier for Matilda and maybe Michelle wouldn’t have to worry about fighting for the will and Heath can finally rest in peace.
    Maybe your voice can be heard and change a little girls life?
    Thanks, Sherry

  26. lisa says:

    Dear Shekhar,
    I never expected to feel this sense of loss for someone I did not know personally. I have been a fan, and you can see in Heath Ledgers eyes, what a beautiful person, and old soul he was. And the light just resonated from his smile. I still can not believe he is no longer with us. I know he will never be forgotten. Thank you for sharing your personal experiences, he truly was an angel as you said.
    best wishes
    lisa

  27. sue says:

    Heath was all heart,fleshed open with a timeless depth that registers in those whose note of soul sings with ‘his’. Like thousands of others, I feel his playful tenderness distill itself in thoughts of him every day, sometimes puzzled with the interweaving of a sense of him in so many of ‘my’ moments. He has graduated, his gifts sprinkled on the screen. So much love, so freely given. Let this be our constant inspiration. And love to everyone in whom his darling spirit plays the reminder of all that we are.

  28. Thank you.
    Finally someone beautifully expresses who he was. How brilliant, kind, gentle, humble and wise.
    I wish more knew and understood.
    Thank you so much for sharing.

  29. Dick McMahon says:

    I’m a 70-year old guy, and the death of Heath Ledger has had a particular impact on me for some reason. It may be because I’m feeling a little guilty about it.
    He was only 19 in the first film I saw of his (an Australian flick), and, after watching his career grow and mature, I also saw his personal life start to disintegrate. He didn’t know me of course, and there was nothing I could have done to prevent his death, but I think I saw it coming … and wish that I would have TRIED in some way.

  30. Carolyn says:

    Mr. McMahon, all of us wish we could have saved him in some way. You are not alone. I’m still searching for reasons. And I know I should not. Acceptance eludes me.
    I wanted to share one thing — an odd thing — that I will always remember about the day he passed. I was working in a kitchen, around lunch time that day. A CD player had been playing the same five disks for the past few days. It was on a high shelf and no one wanted to take the time to change them. A song that I’ve heard hundreds of times over the years came on. The group I was listening to did a cover of Bob Dylan’s “Knocking on Heaven’s Door”. For some reason, the lyrics were feeling very poignant this time…and I got unusually emotional. Especially the lyrics that say “….it’s getting dark, too dark to see…” It was affecting me so much, I was in tears. Out of no where — for no reason — over a song that I had heard over and over for several days in a row…an overwhelming sadness. I remember commenting to a co-worker “we shouldn’t be listening to this right now…” (whatever that meant). It bothered me so much, I stopped what I was doing, got up on a chair and took the CD out of the player.
    At work, I had no access to news, or the internet. I wasn’t allowed to use my cell phone. At the end of a long day, I punched out, grabbed my purse and cell phone and got into my car. My phone had 6 voicemail messages. You know what all of them said. (it was well known to my friends and family knew how much I admired him). I drove home in shock, holding my hand over my mouth, shaking my head —-all the while hoping it wasn’t really true, that it was a mistake of some kind….
    Then I remembered what happened to me at lunch time, and it became important to me to know what time he had passed. I was sure that when he left us, I knew without being told….when that song was playing. I knew.
    It’s like I tuned in to a universal sadness.
    I’m pretty sure I will never be able to listen to that song again.
    I prayed for Heath in church yesterday. I also prayed for help to stop feeling sad about a person I never even knew. God will help me let go.

  31. Christine says:

    Dear Mr. Kapur and the many people that obviously share an interest in your work –
    I feel odd to be writing this because it feels like an intrusion into the world of family and friends that actually knew Heath Ledger and had reason to so profoundly feel the loss of his life in such an intimate way. I have to admit that Heath Ledger’s death has affected me in a very uncharacteristic and admittedly unnerving way.
    I have never understood the whole “groupy” element that follows the life of a public figure as if they actually know that person. I love escaping into other lives through movies, and I have noticed how a truly gifted actor can leave you feeling as if you have known them. Nonetheless, I have always been able to separate real life from fiction, and I have consistently felt that fans and the press have no right at all to intrude in the actual personal lives of these public figures, no matter how charismatic they are.
    Given that, I was and still am unsettled to discover how upset I was to learn of Heath Ledger’s death. It was as if my heart truly stopped for a time, taking my breath with it. I feel as though I’ve been grieving ever since.
    In checking the CNN website now and then to see what comforting news I might somehow find, I discovered the kind words that you wrote about your friend Heath, and I subsequently discovered your website. I have to admit that it was a comfort to see how other total strangers to Heath Ledger have been affected by him.
    Since his death, I have tried to understand the impact he had on me. It is obvious that he was an unusually talented actor, but he wasn’t the only one of those (albeit, the best in my opinion). I kept asking myself, was it his body language, his voice, the characteristics of the people he portrayed, all of the latter? He had an undeniable charisma, but it really wasn’t just his phyical appearance. There was something more but I couldn’t put it into words. It was amazing how he could literally give his body over to the character he was playing, as though he was merely a conduit. I kept coming back to his eyes. But even there, it wasn’t how they moved or the expressions on his face…it was as if something was coming THROUGH his eyes.
    I concluded too that it must be that intangible element that makes each of us who we are…what I see you and so many others referring to as a soul. But why should I feel so moved, so touched? It seems incredibly presumptious of me to think I feel an actual connection to someone I’ve never met. There again, the messages that you have written about Heath Ledger, and the messages sent to you in response, have been comforting…they have shown me that perhaps I haven’t simply become a “groupy”.
    It feels truthful to say I feel like I knew him, yet I humbly admit I did not. I admit too that I would have liked to have met him, although I would never have allowed the intrusion. I have a wonderful husband that I sincerely have loved for 18 years. However, through watching Heath Ledger portray various characters, I have felt an intensity of emotion (love, joy, compassion) that I long to allow myself to feel in my real life with my beloved. For now, I’m too guarded and insecure, but I’m hopeful I can continue to grow. Perhaps my soul has known Heath Ledger’s at some long ago time, although I don’t sense that I have the wisdom of an old soul. Instead, perhaps the gift of an old soul, or angel, in our lives is to awaken our souls to live more truthfully.
    Not being much of a believer in organized religions, I find it gives me a sense of peace to think of each of us being a soul traveling between lifetimes and embodying different physical bodies. It helps to think of Heath Ledger as still being “out there” to watch over his loved ones and perhaps to, in some way, some day, touch our souls again.
    I hope those that knew him are not offended by the sense of closeness that Heath seems to have engendered in so many strangers like me. I am thankful for the entertainment gifted to us by Heath Ledger, but even moreso for the feeling that he has awakened in my soul. I hope in his honor that I can learn to live with more feeling, more kindness, more gentleness, more compassion.
    I am also greatful for the gift of your movie, The Four Feathers, and for the character of Harry that Heath Ledger so magically brought to life. Thank you for giving me an opportunity to share something I have wanted to speak about since Heath’s death, but have felt I had no one with whom to entrust it.

  32. Rosa says:

    Hi Shekhar, as you probably already know, Heath has been awarded the 2008 AFI Award for Best International Actor a few hours ago. The tribute he was given was outstanding, he got a standing ovation and Sally, his mother and Kate, his sister gave a beautiful speech (Kim, his father, also came on stage to accept the award). I captured this wonderful event to share it with everyone:
    http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=xEekfmSdFfs

  33. Alexa says:

    Congratulations to Heath for his Golden Globe win. I only wish he was here to see it. Perhaps he does see it…that is my hope.

  34. tina wedlake says:

    Hello,Mr.Shekhar,
    How blessed that you had the oppertunity to work with Heath! I am one of those,still affected by his passing.But,unlike all of those I have read about,or came into contact with,I had a head’s-up that something was about to happen. I was born with the ability to see into my own future. Whether or not it is a gift,is not for me to decide.
    On jan.18th,I was sleeping,and had the most vivid,prophetic vision,I have ever had. It both startled and saddened me. Up til that point,my visions all followed 5 rules: They were of my immediate family.I was wide awake.I had only my vision to use,and there was no death involved,and they were foretellings into the future,not of immediate happenings.
    In this vision,I was feeling emotions,had all of my other senses,the instinct that I knew where Heath had lived. I have never been to New York.I could hear the cars passing,smell the fumes and feel the bite of the cold through my pajamas.I felt the sting of the cement through my bare feet.
    I was standing behind a police barricade,among the others. Almost all of them had cameras,cell phones or camcorders. The barricade was on both sides of the doorway and I stood near the wall. The woman next to me,a brunette,held my arm,as she stared at the awaiting door. “They’ll be bringing him out any minute now.” “Who?” I ask,afraid I already knew the answer. “Heath Ledger,of course.He died this afternoon. Sad,too, drug overdose. Such a brilliant man and so young,too.”
    I have never seen the woman,never knew her name nor have I seen her since.I held onto the barricade,and felt my ehart break,when they brought him out.i went through the barricade,and lay my hand on the bodybag,and it went through it,to my amazement.
    The second my hand touched his shoulder,I felt everything he had felt,and an overwhelming sadness swallowed me.I felt emotions that i never knew existed. I had felt fleeting glimpses of joy,angersadness,bewilderment and of course,depression.The depression overrode everything else.
    My hand had touched his shoulder,and his skin was cold and clammy,like frozen Play-Doh.His hair was wet,or was it just cold? I couldn’t tell.
    The paramedics lifted his body into the awaiting ambulance and then with a resounding slam,shut the doorway between myself,Heath and the rest of the world. I felt my heart shatter,when that door had shut. I knew then, he was gone forever.I felt my soul quake as I turned to ask the woman “Why? Why him? He was so young?” She was not there.
    I turned to the building and entered through the doors,and no one had seen me.Following my instinct,I entered into the apartment,where police and detectives were standing ,milling about,each with their heads either bowed,or speaking into a cell phone, or quietly speaking amongst themselves.
    Some were calling friends or loved ones,to tell them that Heath Ledger had died. The coroner was there,and he had picked up each pill bnottle and shook his head,and sat it back down again. Then, into a large bag,each bottle went,along with it,a piece of paper. Someone was crying and I looked to see Mary-Kate in a corner,her head in her hands. She cried for herself,not for Heath.She would be imcriminated later on,and she knew it.
    The maid and the masseuse were there,and they,too,were crying. The place was cold,sparsly furnished and skateboards were about the place.
    I went to the bedroom where he had passed away in,and I couldn’t bring myself to see the bed he had lay in. It was too painful. I felt a pulling on my spirit,and I woke slowly.I staggered into the living room,where my husband,Eric,was watching cartoons. I told him” Heath Ledger will die,Jan.22,and I need to help him.” Eric nodded and told me to go back to bed, and get more rest,that it’ll make sense when I woke up. I did but it was hours before I could fall asleep. That scene kept going over and over in my head,and I couldn’t get the feeling of his cold shoulder out of my head.
    So sad,and I had cried myself to sleep.
    It would be the first time,of many,that I would do so, over a man I had never met.
    I was in an emotional limbo,over the next few days,living under a cloud of doom,and gloom. I kept begging for it to be a bad dream,and I knew it wasn’t.
    I knew it was going to happen,and for the next few days,i wanted to place a phone call to the police,but what could I say? ” I had a dream and Heath Ledger will die on Jan.22nd, 2008?”
    The police would think I was a stalker,or crazy,or both and I could be arrested and placed in jail,with no way out. This was my dilemma,for the next few days. I was torn,I wanted to go to New York and tell him,and I wanted it all to be a bad dream.
    I had told a few neighbors,and they had said it was a bad dream,or called me crazy.
    Jan. 22,I refused to turn on my tv,or radio.Or my computer. Jan.23rd, Eric informed me that Heath,in fact,did die in New York.
    On Jan.24th,unable to make the growing feeling of dread go away,I turned on my tv,and there it was: on every channel I had turned to: Heath Ledger,Gone at 28. I had thought that if I didn’t see him dead,then it wasn’t true.
    I knew I was to blame. I had had plenty of warning and still,I did nothing. I sat by and let a man die.
    As a Wiccan,that was,by far,the worst breaching of the Wiccan Rede that can be done: “Do as thou Wilt,an’ it Harm none”.
    By allowing someone to die,I had “harmed one.” To this day,I blame myself and I feel the weight of those who still mourn him.
    This past year,I cried as I sat in front of the computer,watching video after video on you Tube,reading article after article and reading everything I could get my hands on. I felt guilty,I was angry and I kept asking myself “Why him? Why not someone else who didn’t matter?”
    My neighbors don’t call me crazy,for now they look to me as something evil,to be ignored or avoided. When I make a prediction,they listen.
    I agree with barb,for her letter really hit the nail on the head,for those of us mourning him. I can see it,with the tweens,and teenagers, but some of us,are well beyond the teen years,and young adults. Some of us are into our 30’s,40’s and a few into our 50’s. The same question is asked “Why?” You Tube is flooded with tribute videos dedicated to this wonderful,sweet,old soul,that many of us feel as if we knew. he was the older brother we never had,the younger brother we wish we had,the son we never had or the friend we wish we knew.
    He had touched many people’s live=s in ways we are still discovering.
    As what would have been Heath’s thirtieth birthday,I feel the enormous guilt,that comes with each missed holiday,birthday or milestone of adulthood,that I feel Heath should be here to celebrate.
    I write this, not to bring notoriety,or attention to myself,but to agree that we are all connected,and that maybe Shekhar,shed some light on this man,whose life is still touching those he has never met.

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