Anne Heche sadly passed away at age 53 last week following her hospitalization due to multiple car crashes and a fire. Since then, Hollywood stars have been paying tribute to Heche. Many entertainers have given their touching and personal accounts, while others have spoken about her influence as an actress. Her former Men in Trees co-star, Emily Bergl, added her take to the chorus of moving posts. And in doing so, Bergl chose to get real about the rumors that Heche was “crazy,” prompting her ex-partner to respond.
The Blue Jasmine actress played Annie O’Connell, the friend and admirer of Anne Heche’s Marin Frist. So Emily Bergl worked quite closely with Heche during their stints on the ABC show. Amid the flurry of tributes to her late colleague, Bergl took to her Instagram account to address a constant question she’s gotten about the late actress: “You worked with crazy Anne Heche? “So how crazy was she?” Bergl addressed this with the following words:
I worked with Anne Heche for two years on the TV show Men in Trees, and this line of questioning was usually the first out of people’s mouths. She elicited more curiosity than any other famous person I’ve ever worked with. I’d like to give you the answers to the questions I most received about Anne, answers that I gave many, many times.
Anne Heche’s mental health had long been a topic within Hollywood, especially during the later years of her life. Based on Emily Bergl’s comments, it would seem that such speculation certainly floated around while they worked on the network dramedy. And honestly, one gets the feeling that Bergl was bothered by it all. In the same lengthy post, Bergl continued to praise the late Emmy winner, calling her a “genius”:
Anne was not only a genius, but one of the most astoundingly focused and prepared actors I’ve ever worked with. I don’t think I ever saw her miss her mark. I imagine she may have called for her line once or twice, but I can’t recall her ever needing it. I asked her what her secret was, and she told me her first job was playing twins on Another World, so she had to memorize up to seventy pages of dialogue a day.
In her view, the Volcano actress was an incredibly dedicated and hard-working person. One would think that a lot of this stemmed from her working on a soap opera and handling a massive weekly workload. These compliments truly speak to the talent that the star possessed. Later in the post, the Shameless alum jokingly addressed her deceased friend’s much-publicized mental health situation from 2000. She spoke on the woman’s bravery in facing her struggles head on, during a time in which it wasn’t popular to do so:
The only joke I did make about Anne was that it’s likely she didn’t have a psychotic break, but really was an alien, because her strength seemed super human… It’s no wonder Anne titled her brilliant memoir Call Me Crazy, she beat everyone to the punch. She was talking about mental health before it was acceptable to talk about those struggles… But despite a sometimes harrowing life, she was so much fun to be around. She was insouciant, joyous, insightful.
Emily Bergl really gave her followers a peek into the woman behind the plethora of memorable acting roles. As she mentioned in her tribute, Anne Heche wasn’t afraid of the label placed upon her and used it to address her issues while effectively encouraging others to reach out for help. You can read the American Crime actress’ full moving tribute to her late co-star in the post below:
Upon seeing Emily Bergl’s poignant tribute to the late actress, many Hollywood A-listers left reaffirming comments about Anne Heche as both a performer and person. But one comment stuck out from the rest, as Heche’s former partner, James Tupper left a touching message following his well wishes during Heche’s hospitalization. He was grateful to Bergl for clarifying the label that loomed over his ex throughout her career. Tupper replied:
Oh god, thank you for writing this. Is all completely accurate and true. love you e.
He seemed relieved by the post shining a light on his former partner’s private and professional side. James Tupper starred alongside Emily Bergl and Anne Heche during Men in Trees’ two-season run. The ABC dramedy essentially kickstarted Tupper and Heche’s relationship, which lasted from 2007 to 2018.
But James Tupper wasn’t the only one reeling from the star’s passing, as her ex-husband Coleman “Coley” Laffoon and her eldest son, Homer, paid emotional tribute after she was declared legally dead. Both spoke to the tragedy of losing the mother of two so unexpectedly, though they seem appreciative of the support they’ve received in the interim. It was reported that after she was taken off life support, the actress’ organs would be donated, and that sort of pre-determined action speaks to the generosity that Emily Bergl and so many more are reflecting on.
We here at CinemaBlend are sending our condolences to Anne Heche’s family and friends during this trying time.