Heath Ledger life and biography

Heath Ledger picture, image, poster

Heath Ledger biography

Date of birth : 1979-04-04
Date of death : 2008-01-22
Birthplace : Perth, Western Australia
Nationality : Australian
Category : Arts and Entertainment
Last modified : 2010-04-12
Credited as : Australian actor in Brokeback Mountain movie, Award for Best Supporting Actor, 'The Joker'

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Heath Andrew Ledger was an Australian television and film actor. After performing roles in Australian television and film during the 1990s, Ledger moved to the United States in 1998 to develop his film career.

Heath Ledger was a rising 21st-century movie star until his shocking death in 2008. Ledger kicked off his career by playing the warrior hero Conor in the Dark Ages TV series Roar (1997). The series lasted only one season, but established Ledger as an up-and-coming heartthrob. He enhanced that reputation in the teen movie Ten Things I Hate About You (1999, with Julia Stiles), a loose retelling of Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew. He played the feisty son of fellow Australian Mel Gibson in The Patriot (2000) and returned to horseback for the jousting adventure A Knight's Tale (2001). He also played a fictionalized version of Jacob Grimm in the 2005 Terry Gilliam film The Brothers Grimm. The same year he co-starred in the daring western Brokeback Mountain (directed by Ang Lee), with Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal playing cowboys in love. Ledger was found dead in his Manhattan apartment on the afternoon of 22 January 2008. An autopsy determined that he had suffered an accidental overdose of prescribed anti-depressants, pain killers, and sleeping medications. Ledger had already finished filming his role as The Joker in The Dark Knight, a Batman film released in July 2008. He was nominated and won awards for his portrayal of the Joker in The Dark Knight, including the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, a Best Actor International Award at the 2008 Australian Film Institute Awards, for which he became the first actor to win an award posthumously, the 2008 Los Angeles Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actor, the 2009 Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor and the 2009 BAFTA Award for Best Supporting Actor.

He died at the age of 28, from an accidental "toxic combination of prescription drugs." A few months before his death, Ledger had finished filming his penultimate performance, as the Joker in The Dark Knight, his death coming during editing of the film and casting a shadow over the subsequent promotion of the $180 million production. At the time of his death, on 22 January 2008, he had completed about half of his work performing the role of Tony in Terry Gilliam's film The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus.

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