Heath Ledger, who passed away suddenly at the age of 28 last week, was tipped to portray the life of anti-whaling captain Paul Watson; as reported by the West Australian. The production group Kingsborough Pictures was planning to “vigorously pursue” Ledger for the role after the actor expressed extreme interest in it during a meeting with the legendary captain last October. Immediately after their conversation, Heath became a member of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society advisory board. From the article,
Under the direction of filmmaker and actor Stuart Townsend, the movie Mighty Hearts could have had Ledger as Capt. Watson ramming driftnet fishing trawlers, smashing illegal whaling boats and sailing boldly into Soviet waters in his bid to stop whalers. Kroonenburg said Ledger would have been perfect for the lead role in the film, now in pre-production, as he was a gifted actor who had a genuine interest in whales and had demonstrated a capacity to “age beautifully” in Brokeback Mountain.
Apparently, it’s been revealed that Ledger was also working hard on an animated documentary about whales and was “extremely enthusiastic” about showing Captain Watson the finished product. Sadly, like many of his other projects, we have no idea if that work will ever see the light of day. You can view Watson’s comments on Heath’s passing — as well as learn more about the group the actor was a part of here.