While the world mourns the loss of Michael Jackson, Vanity Fair has cooked up a somewhat controversial (and fairly random) look back at Heath Ledger's final days, with quotes from his agent, his vocal coach, director Terry Gilliam and Doctor Parnassus cinematographer Nicola Pecorini. The article, published in part on Vanity Fair's website, is broken into different paragraphs with titles like "How chronic insomnia may have led to his death" and "How his relationship failed." Did the world -- not to mention Ledger's fans, friends and family -- really need all these old wounds dug up and scraped for a little extra attention? Probably not.

Of all the quotes, the most fascinating seem to be the ones which talk about The Dark Knight, and how Ledger's pay-or-play deal allowed him to do whatever he wanted with the role of Joker seeing as he was to still receive a paycheck regardless of whether he remained in the movie. According to Pecorini, Ledger was actually hoping his performance was way too out there and that he'd get fired, allowing him to take a nice, long paid vacation. Ledger's agent, Steven Alexander, sort of backs up the statement with this one about the actor's attitude toward big summer movies, saying he "was always hesitant to be in a summer blockbuster, with the dolls and action figures and everything else that comes with one of those movies. He was afraid it would define him and limit his choices."

The article also delves into Ledger's rampant drug use, eventual sobriety and just how rough his break-up with Michelle Williams was. It also links off to a 2000 photo spread featuring the actor in some, um, interesting poses. Definitely an odd piece, and I'm sure some will be critical of Vanity Fair for running it. Check it out over here and let us know what you think.

[via The Playlist]

categories Movies, Cinematical