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Heath Ledger

Heath Ledgerrevised.jpg
Ledger at the 56th Berlin International Film Festival in February 2006

Born

Heath Andrew Ledger
4 April 1979
Perth, Western Australia, Australia

Died

22 January 2008
New York City, U.S.

Cause of death

Cardiac arrest brought on by prescription drug intoxication

Body discovered

New York City, U.S.

Resting place

Karrakatta Cemetery

Occupation

  • Actor
  • music video director

Years active

1993–2008

Partner

Michelle Williams

Children

1

Heath Andrew Ledger was an Australian actor and music video director. After performing roles in several Australian television and film productions during the 1990s, Ledger left for the United States in 1998 to further develop his film career. His work comprised nineteen films, including 10 Things I Hate About You , The Patriot , A Knight's Tale , Monster's Ball , Lords of Dogtown , Brokeback Mountain , Casanova , The Dark Knight , and The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus , the latter two being posthumous releases. He also produced and directed music videos and aspired to be a film director. His performance as the Joker in The Dark Knight has been hailed as one of the greatest performances in cinema history.

For his portrayal of Ennis Del Mar in Brokeback Mountain, Ledger won the New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Actor and the Best International Actor Award from the Australian Film Institute; he was the first actor to win the latter award posthumously. He was nominated for the BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role and the Academy Award for Best Actor. Posthumously, he shared the 2007 Independent Spirit Robert Altman Award with the rest of the ensemble cast, the director, and the casting director for the film I'm Not There, which was inspired by the life and songs of American singer-songwriter Bob Dylan. In the film, Ledger portrayed a fictional actor named Robbie Clark, one of six characters embodying aspects of Dylan's life and persona.

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