Jake Gyllenhaal has shared an amazing story about his friendship with the late actor Heath Ledger.
The 37-year-old says that both he and Heath were up for the starring role in Baz Luhrmann’s 2001 movie Moulin Rouge!
The role eventually went to British actor Ewan McGregor, with Nicole Kidman famously costarring.
‘We auditioned with many different actresses, it was a long process,’ Jake told GQ magazine. ‘But I never met Heath, I only heard about him.
He furthermore added: ‘We would be shuffled in and out of rooms. They would literally put me in a room and lock the door and Heath would come in and then Heath would be shuffled through the door. I never saw him.’
‘Baz just offered me his next movie’
He continued: ‘When Ewan was cast, I finally met Heath and we sort of became friends before Brokeback Mountain, based on our mutual frustration. When Brokeback Mountain came out and it got all the attention it did, I remember, a few months later, Heath called me and he was like “Hey mate, I got some news for you.” I said “What?”
‘He said, “Baz just offered me his next movie. I just wanted you to know, I f**king turned it down.”‘
He furthermore added: ‘So that was how much Heath loved me, you know.’
Both stars were Oscar-nominated for their work on Brokeback Mountain in 2006. Heath sadly died just two years later of cardiac arrest.
Heath’s other film credits include 10 Things I Hate About You and The Dark Knight. Meanwhile, Jake went on to star in movies like Nocturnal Animals and Enemy.