His death was as tragic as Heath Ledger's passing, and his accomplishments were worthy of being celebrated. Indeed, Brad Renfro's own words might have haunted him in his final hours.Asked by Perez Hilton what he would say to young child stars entering the business, Renfro foreshadowed his tragic fate—he stated that they should stay away from the party scene.Speaking from the darkness of his own experience, Renfro said, "A lot of people don't make it. What most people don't realize is that the young actor had been struggling to live a sober life in the months before his death.They don't live through it.”The tragic irony is that this sentiment would become his truth. In truth, the night that he died could have been a relapse.Renfro's death was widely ignored and brushed off as the expected consequence of his descent into illegal drug addiction.
The 2008 tribute also included Donfeld, Dabbs Greer, Ousmane Sembène, Freddie Francis, and Melville Shavelson.
Perhaps no other national tragedy ever highlighted this hypocrisy than the back-to-back drug overdose deaths of Brad Renfro and Heath Ledger.
Only 25 years old when he died, Renfro was three years younger than Ledger.
The tribute marks the passing of notable actors and film industry professionals who have died in the past year.
Although the tribute included actress Deborah Kerr and legendary Swedish director Ingmar Bergman, the biggest response elicited by far from the audience happened at the crescendo when actor Heath Ledger appeared.