The following clip from the Heath Ledger: Too Young To Die documentary brings to light some unnerving new details from the diary the late actor kept while filming Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight. Ledger’s total immersion into the Joker role is believed by many to have contributed to his depression upon completing the shoot, which led to drug abuse, and ultimately his tragic death at the age of 28.
Here, his father flicks through the diary and we get some insight into Ledger’s mindset during his time in the white facepaint. There are passages of text, images of hyenas and the disturbed Alex DeLarge from A Clockwork Orange. Finally, we get to the last page and see the words “BYE BYE” written in large, Joker-style font.
A chilling portent of what was to come, or was he just bidding farewell to whoever may have been reading? Whatever it means, the diary excerpts do seem to suggest that Ledger may have taken his research for his role in The Dark Knight to some unhealthy places – even if it did result in one of the greatest performances in comic book movie history.