I can be happy with myself and honestly say that my first thought on hearing this was, "I hope it's not true, how sad, he was a talented, fearless artist." But I am shamed that my second thought was "How does this effect The Dark Knight?" Even though I didn't allow myself the luxury of expanding upon this thought, even though I only felt this thought pop into my consciousness for a moment and immediately ejected it, I did think it and what's more upsetting is that I kept thinking it, it kept popping back into the stream of thought.
It makes me wonder. It makes me wonder about all the things that we spend our time doing. It makes me wonder if Warner Bros execs are throwing their coffee mugs against the walls, because they just lost the break out star of their Bat franchise. It makes me wonder, good or bad, how much time people will take, in considered decorum, before they start calling each other to figure out what has to be rewritten or postponed or repositioned. When an actor puts himself alone in a room for days and days just to find his inner psychotic, just to make an entertainment, is that really worth the toll?
I remember Christian Bale's extreme weight loss and gain and how it was the "neat trivia fact" of the Hollywood promotion shows. Wasn't that beyond reasonable? Death is a great equalizer and it blows away the mists of promotion and pomp. At least it does for me. I don't want to think about comic book movies right now and I don't like the strange uncomfortable feeling that people are bowing their heads in sorrow, but darting their eyes around the room looking to see when it will be appropriate to turn on the hype machine that will no doubt come storming at us with the Spring melt, as Mr. Ledger's last film role becomes a morose but unstoppable Juggernaut of cash, that just adds to the pain and spectacle that his family now will begin to endure.
I'm really sorry that I thought of the fate of a movie when I heard of a young man's death. Here's to respecting the dead. On comes the media storm.