AceShowbiz - %cJake Gyllenhaal% remembers %cHeath Ledger%, his on-screen lover in "Brokeback Mountain", who died almost eight years ago. Gyllenhaal calls his former co-star "extraordinary" and "always somebody who I admired."
Ledger died in January 2008, less than three years after "Brokeback Mountain" hit the cinemas and won prestigious awards. The Australian actor was on the peak of his career when he was found unconscious in his bed by his housekeeper. He was in the middle of filming his acclaimed role as Joker in "The Dark Knight".
In the 10th anniversary of "Brokeback", Gyllenhaal recalled the time he got the script and did not hesitate to play the role of a gay cowboy. "It's one of the most beautiful scripts I've ever read, and it was Ang Lee, and at the time Heath was a friend of mine, before we even shot the movie, and always sort of alluring to me," the 34-year-old actor told THR.
Gyllenhaal said Ledger had an aura that made people like him. "Heath was always somebody who I admired," he gushed. "He was way beyond his years as a human, in a way. I wasn't quite sure where he came from. I mean, I know he's from Perth, but I wasn't really quite sure where he came from, and I think that's the feeling most people got when they were around him and why he was so extraordinary."
Gyllenhaal continued, "And when that opportunity came, I was a young actor. I was like, 'Yeah, I'm in.' I know a lot has been made of the choice to do it, but it just didn't seem like something that was scary to me. You know, it was binding, because sometimes a lot of that character is very specifically the more overtly gay character of the two. The one who's struggling with it less. And I didn't really realize that. And that was an interesting journey for me, giving into that idea. Being the one who tries to push the relationship."
Gyllenhall also remembered Ledger being good with animals in the movie. "Heath, you know, would walk up to a horse and could like silence the horse. Just literally he'd be like, 'Shh. Shh.' And then he'd get on the horse. I'd be like, 'I'm going to get on you.' They'd be like, 'F**k off!' I didn't really have that style."