Actor Heath Ledger was found dead yesterday afternoon of a possible drug overdose in his SoHo apartment. Fellow Aussie Mel Gibson said, “I had such great hope for him. He was just taking off, and to lose his life at such a young age is a tragic loss.”
He was discovered by his housekeeper around 3pm and pronounced dead at 3:30pm. Ledger was found naked face down at the foot of his bed. There is speculation that he overdosed on sleeping pills that where found in the room with him. An autopsy is scheduled for today.
Ledger was co-starring in the soon to be released Dark Night, the sequel to Batman Begins. Ledger was reprising the famous role of The joker, played by Jack Nicholson in the original Batman. The world has been a buzz for news of the film. Speculation running wild as to who and how the role would be revived. Images of Ledger portraying The Joker have been seen everywhere. Dark Night maybe the most anticipated movie of the year, possibly even the decade!
Ledger was perhaps best known for his 2005 portrayal of Ennis Del Mar in Brokeback Mountain, about two cowboys who had a secret romantic relationship. The role earned him an Oscar nomination. This role also brought him to the attention of the GLBT Community. This wasn’t his first gay role. At 17 he played a gay cyclist on Sweat, a down-under TV series about elite athletes. He said he wanted that role because there were so few gays on television, he figured he could get some attention if he did the role justice.He was reportedly in negotiations to reprise his Brokeback Mountain role in a sequel, where Ennis Del Mar comes “out” to his family, friends and neighbors. That would have been a very
Ledger was committed to his work, and often felt it was as good as it could have been. He questioned his own talent publicly. But he was sure he didn’t want to take the “easy” road.
“Ledger was very serious about his work, trying to forge a path like that of Sean Penn or Jack Nicholson, trying to walk the line between what the studios wanted him to be (a romantic hero such as those he played in 10 Things I Hate About You and A Knight’s Tale, his first two big hits) and the more renegade figures he was drawn to (Ennis Del Mar in Brokeback Mountain, the iconic Australia outlaw in Ned Kelly or the junkie in Candy).” Writen by Belinda Luscombe at Time.com
People are scrambling to figure out how and why this happened. There are many saying that he committed suicide. I think this is grossly incorrect. People often mistook his sensitivity for depression or gloom. Ledger may have been brooding and dark, but you can see from his actions, off the set, that he had a zeal for life. He loved his 2 yr old daughter, Matilda, and would not leave her like that.
Then there are the facts of the scene.
He was scheduled to have a massage. That’s why his housekeeper went to wake him. NY police spokesman Paul Browne said the pills were not “scattered about”. You would expect to find pills everywhere in a suicide. Plus, there was no note. When people take their life, they leave a note. Not to mention the people around him saying how exited he was over his role as The Joker. I don’t think he killed himself. Let’s wait to see what the medical examiner says.
AKA Heathcliff Andrew Ledger
Birthplace: Perth, Australia
Location of death: New York City
Cause of death: unspecified
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
High School: Guildford Grammar School, East Guildford, Australia
Father: Kim Ledger (mining engineer)
Mother: Sally Bell (divorced Kim Ledger 1989)
Father: Roger Bell (stepfather, married to Ledger’s mother)
Mother: Emma Brown (stepmother, married to Ledger’s father)
Sister: Catherine Ledger (stage actress)
Sister: Olivia Ledger (half-sister, b. circa 1997)
Sister: Ashleigh Bell (half-sister, b. circa 1989)
Girlfriend: Lisa Zane (actress, dated 1997-98)
Girlfriend: Christina Cauchi (model, dated 2000, 2001)
Girlfriend: Heather Graham (actress, dated 2000 to 2001)
Girlfriend: Naomi Watts (actress, dated 2002 to 2004)
Girlfriend: Michelle Williams (actress, cohabited and engaged 2005-07, one daughter)
Daughter: Matilda Rose Ledger (b. 28-Oct-2005)
Roar Conor (1997-2000)
I’m Not There (3-Sep-2007)
Brokeback Mountain (2-Sep-2005)
The Brothers Grimm (29-Jul-2005)
Lords of Dogtown (3-Jun-2005)
The Order (5-Sep-2003)
Ned Kelly (22-Mar-2003)
The Four Feathers (8-Sep-2002)
Monster’s Ball (11-Nov-2001)
A Knight’s Tale (8-Mar-2001)
The Patriot (27-Jun-2000)
Two Hands (29-Jul-1999)
10 Things I Hate About You (31-Mar-1999)