He essentially documented his life.” Interspersed with interviews — among them former girlfriend Naomi Watts, musician Ben Harper, directors Ang Lee and Catherine Hardwicke, and actors Djimon Hounsou, Ben Mendelsohn and Emile Hirsch — are countless clips from Ledger’s home videos, dating from his teen years in Perth, Australia, and ending just days before his death in 2008.
They were contributed, the filmmakers say, by his loved ones, who felt strongly about showing how creative and fundamentally optimistic Ledger was — a rebuke to rumors of a depressive spiral that precipitated his death.
“I was living with [Ledger’s ‘Roar’ co-star and girlfriend] Lisa Zane, and she took him by the scruff and brought him to LA and said he was going to be successful. “The day after he moved in I gave him the script to ‘10 Things I Hate About You,’ written by a friend.
’” But nine years after Ledger’s tragic death at 28 from an accidental prescription drug overdose, Amato agreed to open up about his and Ledger’s longtime friendship in “I Am Heath Ledger,” premiering on April 23 at the Tribeca Film Festival, then playing in theaters on May 3 and airing on Spike TV on May 17.
But we quickly realized this was something that was very deep in Heath’s soul — he had a passion for photography, for film.
Heath was a brilliant actor and an exceptional person." Fellow Australians like Mel Gibson and Nicole Kidman (best friend to Heath's ex Naomi Watts) have expressed their sadness over his passing.
Warner Brothers, which is releasing the movie this summer, released a statement reading in part, "The entertainment community has lost an enormous talent.