Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Modest Mouse's New "King Rat" Video, Directed by Heath Ledger, is Released

Besides being an actor, the late Heath Ledger also directed several music videos, and his last one was released today. Ledger's six-minute video for Modest Mouse's song "King Rat" made its debut today exclusively on MySpace Video. (Embedding the video was disabled, but I've put a screen cap above and you can view the video at the link.)

Although the animated video features fish and other sea creatures piloting a fishing boat, which seems like standard cartoon fare, the video takes a dark turn as we see the "fishermen" hunting for (and killing) humans. (Which may explain why the video has a positive rating of only 25%.) It's said that the video reflects Ledger's interest in the issue of illegal commercial whaling, which is a controversial issue in the late actor's native Australia.

A press release says that Ledger had proposed the idea for the video in 2007, according to a blog post at SeattlePI.com. The video was unfinished at the time of his death, but was completed by a company that Ledger had worked with, in honor of the actor.

The release also said that, in keeping with Ledger's interests in protecting ocean life, proceeds from sales of the first month of the video's iTunes sales will go to an international marine wildlife organization.

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