We hate the way we don't hate this touching story—not even close, not even a little bit, not even at all.
It's been more than 20 years since Heath Ledger and Julia Stiles set the bar for an entire generation's dream high school romance with the 1999 hit rom-com 10 Things I Hate About You. Much of course has happened in the many years since. The film turned the on-screen pair into breakout stars and successful Hollywood careers for both ensued.
Tragically, Ledger's was cut short when he died in 2008, sending shockwaves through the industry and all who adored the young actor lost too soon. Still, his impact remains all these years later, including for Stiles. During an appearance on the People in the '90s podcast, the actress recalled one of the most beloved scenes of the film—when she recites that poem—and how Ledger's actions in that scene still stand out to her today.
"I remember Heath Ledger was so gracious about the whole thing," she said. "I appreciate this so much more now having worked more."
As she explained, "He wasn't trying to compete with me. He stood back and he was like, this is your scene."
While Stiles teared up during the powerful monologue, "When they did his reaction shot, he didn't well up," she pointed out. "He didn't go, OK, now I have to do something with my side of the camera.'"
Of course, his performance as rebel Patrick was equally applaudable. "He had his amazing moments in the movie, too," Stiles acknowledged. "But he was confident enough even just starting out to be like, I'm handing over the stage to you, and I learned way later in life that doesn't always happen."
Now that she has piqued our nostalgia, here are 20 more secrets from the movie below. Spoiler alert: You won't be just whelmed with these details.