Verne Troyer's Tribute to Heath Ledger Overshadowed by Potential For Ex-Strangling

Life is rough these days for Verne Troyer, the diminutive, sex-tape-making, back-tax-owing (allegedly), bomb-starring actor whose bout with the tabloids took an introspective turn Tuesday in an interview with E! Denying he had anything to do with the "unauthorized" release of his videotaped tongue-stabbing of ex-girlfriend Ranae Shrider, a sober Troyer inventoried Shrider's motivations for supposedly dropping the tryst at TMZ's doorstep — and, in the process, both defused and started harrowing rumors we could have gone the rest of our lives without conjuring:

And what of claims made by Shrider, like that she nearly drowned the Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me star in a romantic bubble bath?
"There's no incident like that. She's coming up with things and telling media anything to make it interesting. I haven't seen everything she's done...The things she says just aren't true," he adds.

Must be awkward, then, considering the former couple still live together.

"She's still in the house," Troyer says, noting that he's taking legal action to force her out, but their situation "makes it even harder, to, you know, not strangle her."

But... how would that even work? Anyway, Troyer's pulling through with the help of friends, family and his lawyer, as well as by continued (if "dehydrated") work on films including Heath Ledger's unfinished final project, The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus. Recalling the late actor's troubled time on set ("He couldn't sleep because he was so wrapped up in the character of Joker in Batman. ... Throughout our shoot it was the same way"), a misty-eyed Troyer nevertheless insisted Ledger was not suicidal — anything but, really, with a Ledger heart sketch eventually making the rounds as the default Parnassus crew tattoo. Troyer pointed out his own on his right hand, conveniently obscuring the small Guru Pitka likeness he drunkenly had inked during production on The Love Guru. Thank God those days are behind him.