A Life Ended Too Soon

Even with his big face and chiseled jaw, Heath Ledger was one of those guys who blended in easily. In November 2005, waiting for me outside a pub, as he would've called it, he looked like any other scruffy twentysomething in Brooklyn, N.Y. He was a little bleary-eyed from being a new father but also a little wary of the press from being a heartthrob. We were meeting to discuss what would be his Oscar-nominated performance in Brokeback Mountain. We went to a local café; he didn't eat. Ledger was serious about—and not that impressed with—his work, trying to move from...

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