“King Rat” Modest Mouse Video Directed by Heath Ledger Supports Sea Shepherd
Modest Mouse has announced today the release of the highly anticipated Heath Ledger directed video for ‘King Rat.’ The animated video will make its debut exclusively on MySpace Music starting August 4th, the same day the new Modest Mouse EP which includes the ‘King Rat' track, No One’s First, And You’re Next is released.
In January of 2007, while visiting his homeland of Australia, Heath Ledger presented Isaac Brock of Modest Mouse with an idea to direct a video for their yet-to-be-released song ‘King Rat’. Heath’s vision, brave and unapologetic in its nature, would marry his love of bold and original music with his impassioned stance against the illegal commercial whale hunts taking place of the coast of Australia each year. Always one to operate from his heart and take a stand for what he cared deeply about, Heath's intention was to raise awareness on modern whaling practices through a potent visual piece without having to say a word. It was his way to let the story, in its candid reversal, speak for itself.
The video was fully conceived down to the last detail but unfinished when Heath passed away in January of 2008. In the interest of fully realizing Heath’s final work as a visual artist, THE MASSES (a film and music company which Heath was a partner in) finished the video in his honor, with the support and advocacy of Isaac Brock.
The video will be available on iTunes starting Friday, August 7th. Proceeds from iTunes video downloads in the first month of release will go toward Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, an international non-profit, marine wildlife conservation organization committed to ending the destruction of habitat and slaughter of wildlife in the world's oceans in order to conserve and protect ecosystems and species. Sea Shepherd uses direct action tactics to investigate, document, and take action when necessary to expose and confront illegal activities on the high seas.
The King Rat video was directed by Heath Ledger, co-directed and illustrated by Daniel Auber with lead animation by Norris Houk, animation by Jade Taglioli and produced by Sara Cline of THE MASSES.
Heath Ledger met with Captain Paul Watson and board member Susan Weingartner in the fall of 2007 to show them the unfinished version of this video. Sea Shepherd Conservation Society is honored to be connected with this important work and hopes that it brings attention to the illegal slaughter of whales in the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary.