While Heath Ledger's role as Joker in The Dark Knight might go down as his last (and greatest) complete role, technically his final performance will come in Terry Gilliam's The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus. In a weird way it's almost fitting that Gilliam -- who's been cursed for years now -- would wind up being the filmmaker to last work with Ledger. Not only has Ledger's next-to-last film broken almost every box office record to date, but folks are so afraid of a Gilliam flick that even with the marketing machine that is the death of Heath Ledger, Hollywood still doesn't want to go near Dr. Parnassus.
A story in The Hollywood Reporter last week claims Ledger could be in a "position of having one of the biggest- grossing movies in Hollywood history out at the same time he's in a movie hunting for an domestic distribution deal." And the scary part of this is that when Ledger passed away, Hollywood heavyweights like Johnny Depp, Jude Law and Colin Farrell stepped in to finish the film for their deceased friend. With ALL THAT, it's still a risky movie to get behind. One "distribution guru" added, "For all the elements in this film, it is a Terry Gilliam picture, and as much as you want a movie of his to be good, you have to be careful." Poor Gilliam ... the guy just can't catch a break.
Well, unless you want to see Dr. Parnassus. Wouldn't it be kinda spooky if one death helped revive another's career? If we, as an audience, had the ability to choose between the doom and gloom of mourning an actor's death or the light and joy that comes with helping a beloved filmmaker get back on track?