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‘Brokeback’ has exceeded Ledger's expectations

Actor was most happy to get the seal of approval from author Annie Proulx
/ Source: The Associated Press

Heath Ledger says “Brokeback Mountain,” which is nominated for eight Oscars, has already exceeded his expectations for the film.

The Ang Lee-directed movie about a longtime affair between two cowboys is nominated for best director, best picture and best actor for Ledger.

Other nominations include best supporting actress for Ledger’s fiancee, Michelle Williams, and best supporting actor for co-star Jake Gyllenhaal.

“The movie’s already exceeded any expectations I had,” Ledger told reporters Wednesday at the Berlin International Film Festival. “I think pleasing Annie Proulx, the writer, and getting her nod of approval was the biggest success for me, for us.”

Ledger said he felt the movie “will surprise people.”

“Unfortunately people are very quick in life to label something that they’re uncomfortable with,” he added. “It transcends a label. It’s a story of two human beings that are in love; get over the fact that it’s two men — that’s the point. ... If you can’t understand it, just don’t go see the movie.”

Ledger was in Berlin to promote “Candy,” a film that saw him return to his native Australia and star as a man who joins his girlfriend on a downward spiral into heroin addiction.

“It was incredibly liberating in the sense that it was the first film I’ve done using my own accent in about eight years,” he said.

“Candy” is one of 19 films competing for the annual Berlin festival’s top Golden Bear prize. Directed by Neil Armfield and based on a novel by Luke Davies, it also stars Abbie Cornish and Geoffrey Rush.