Vale: Heath Ledger dead

Heath Ledger was found dead Tuesday at a downtown Manhattan residence, and police said drugs may have been a factor. He was 28. NYPD spokesman Paul Browne said Ledger had an appointment for a massage at the Manhattan apartment believed to be his home. The housekeeper who went to let him know the masseuse had arrived found him dead at 3:26 p.m.

The Australian-born actor was nominated for an Oscar for “Brokeback Mountain,” where he met his wife, actress Michelle Williams, in 2005. Ledger and Williams had lived in Brooklyn and had a daughter, Matilda, until they split up last year.

Ledger is to appear as the Joker this year in “The Dark Night,” a sequel to 2005’s “Batman Begins.” He’s had starring roles in “A Knight’s Tale” and “The Patriot,” and played the suicidal son of Billy Bob Thornton in “Monster’s Ball.”

Ledger grew up in Perth, and began doing amateur theater at age 10. By 16 he landed a television role as a gay athlete in the WA-filmed series Sweat followed by a starring role in the Queensland-shot Roar.

Ledger moved to Los Angeles and costarred in “10 Things I Hate About You,” a teen comedy reworking of “The Taming of the Shrew.”

Offers for other teen flicks came his way, but Ledger turned them down, preferring to remain idle than sign on for projects he didn’t like.

“It wasn’t a hard decision for me,” Ledger told the Associated Press in 2001. “It was hard for everyone else around me to understand. Agents were like, `You’re crazy,’ my parents were like, `Come on, you have to eat.'”

His latest role was in “I’m Not There,” in which he played one of the many incarnations of Bob Dylan — as did Cate Blanchett, whose performance in that film earned an Oscar nomination Tuesday for best supporting actress.

Source: Associated Press


  1. Very sad – I was not a fan of Heath but The Patriot was the movie I first saw him in – and I love Mel’s epic movies!

    Its tragic and sad, but its no different than anyone else, only difference was he was in the public eye. Its not nice to hear about young people who die. The autopsy report will state what happened.

    Condolences to Heath’s family.

  2. I did a double take at the TV when I heard, a genuine double take is rare these days.
    Its a tragic loss and I my thoughts go out to his family.
    The Dark Knight is ready for release and Heath was days away from finishing shooting on the Terry Gilliam picture titled “The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus” which is due to be released next year.
    Heath was being compared to Brandon and Penn in the states and he was looking to become one of the greatest actors in the world in the years to come. Now we can only think what could have been.
    He made these comments in an interview about the Bob Dylan movie he played a part in just weeks ago.

    “You’re forced into, kind of, respecting yourself more,” he said. “You learn more about yourself through your child, I guess. I think you also look at death differently. It’s like a Catch-22: I feel good about dying now because I feel like I’m alive in her, you know, but at the same hand, you don’t want to die because you want to be around for the rest of her life.”

  3. I was genuinely shocked and saddened by the headline.
    There are other actors who could do the same without upsetting me.
    His performance and charisma in ’10 Things’ will always be with us.
    Dear little Matilda.
    pity about the mother and her father.

  4. Already the first reports that “pills were scattered around the body” have been retracted.

    I seem to remember Sweat being on Ch10. It would be fitting if they replayed the series.

    Angela Bishop. Like mother, like daughter? Enough said.

  5. Yep, very sad when someone dies so young. I can’t say I was enamoured with him but his acting was superior. The parts he chose were mesmerising and after the initial shock of hearing the news, my next thought was that I am glad he had finished filming TDK. He will possibly become iconic with that role.
    I saw a pic of him the other day from the set of the new Terry Gilliam movie. He was smiling but with a crazed look in his eyes. He was great in Brothers Grimm and I would have loved to see what Gilliam was going to do with him.

  6. Was anyone else disgusted by Angela Bishop who on Ten News said that Heath had the “opportunity to play a gay athlete or a NORMAL athlete, but chose the gay athlete.” So gays aren’t normal?

    Good old fashioned homophobia despite what’s happened. Angela’s just like her mother.

  7. Fairly certain the filming on Dark Knight has wrapped, maybe some post production stuff that needs to be done before the May release, which could be affected by ledger’s passing.

    Anyway, a real tragedy, I wasn’t a fan of his, but still,a talented actor who had the world at his feet.

  8. It’s very sad, but surely a bit early to blame it on drugs. The first reports are often exaggerated and sometimes when the truth appears a few days later, it is quite different.

  9. To first Anononymous post – we don’t know yet the reason for his death. . Pills were found at the scene, not crack pipes, not a heroin kit, not a rolled up dollar bill and white powder, etc…

    Lets not jump to conclusions that he was a druggie and died of an accidental drug overdose.

    Either way it’s pretty heartless of you to make such a comment.

  10. Why is everyone apart from the ABC reporting “Ledger WAS to appear as the Joker this year in “The Dark Night”? They are still releasing it with him in the film.


  11. I just can not believe this shocking news! When I saw the report, I couldn’t even comprehend what they were saying at first.

    Rest in peace

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