At 28 years old, Heath Ledger has this physical status:
After sitting for early graduation exams at age 16 to get his diploma, Ledger left school to pursue an acting career. With Trevor DiCarlo, his best friend since the age of three, Ledger drove across Australia from Perth to Sydney, returning to Perth to take a small role in Clowning Around (1992), the first part of a two-part television series, and to work on the TV series Sweat (1996), in which he played a cyclist. From 1993 to 1997, Ledger also had parts in the Perth television series Ship to Shore (1993); Ledger also had parts in the short-lived Fox Broadcasting Company fantasy-drama Roar (1997); in Home and Away (1997), one of Australia's most successful television shows; and in the Australian film Blackrock (1997), his feature film debut. In 1999, he starred in the teen comedy 10 Things I Hate About You and in the acclaimed Australian crime film Two Hands, directed by Gregor Jordan.
In the early 2000s, he starred in supporting roles as Gabriel Martin, the eldest son of Benjamin Martin (Mel Gibson), in The Patriot (2000), and as Sonny Grotowski, the son of Hank Grotowski (Billy Bob Thornton), in Monster's Ball (2001); as well as leading or title roles in A Knight's Tale (2001), The Four Feathers (2002), The Order (2003), Ned Kelly (2003), Casanova (2005), The Brothers Grimm (2005), and Lords of Dogtown (2005). In 2001, he won a ShoWest Award as "Male Star of Tomorrow".
Ledger received "Best Actor of 2005" awards from both the New York Film Critics Circle and the San Francisco Film Critics Circle for his performance in Brokeback Mountain, in which he plays Wyoming ranch hand Ennis Del Mar, who has a love affair with aspiring rodeo rider Jack Twist, played by Jake Gyllenhaal. He also received the nominations for a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor — Motion Picture Drama, a Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role, a BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role, and an Academy Award for Best Actor for this performance, making him, at age 26, the eight-youngest nominee in the category. In The New York Times review of the film, critic Stephen Holden writes: "Both Mr. Ledger and Mr. Gyllenhaal make this anguished love story physically palpable. Mr. Ledger magically and mysteriously disappears beneath the skin of his lean, sinewy character. It is a great screen performance, as good as the best of Marlon Brando and Sean Penn." In a review in Rolling Stone, Peter Travers states: "Ledger's magnificent performance is an acting miracle. He seems to tear it from his insides. Ledger doesn't just know how Ennis moves, speaks and listens; he knows how he breathes. To see him inhale the scent of a shirt hanging in Jack's closet is to take measure of the pain of love lost."
After Brokeback Mountain, Ledger costarred with fellow Australian Abbie Cornish in the 2006 Australian film Candy, an adaptation of the 1998 novel Candy: A Novel of Love and Addiction, as young heroin addicts in love attempting to break free of their addiction, whose mentor is played by Geoffrey Rush; for his performance as sometime poet Dan, Ledger was nominated for three "Best Actor" awards, including one of the Film Critics Circle of Australia Awards, which both Cornish and Rush won in their categories. Shortly after the release of Candy, Ledger was invited to join the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. As one of six actors embodying different aspects of the life of Bob Dylan in the 2007 film I'm Not There, directed by Todd Haynes, Ledger "won praise for his portrayal of 'Robbie [Clark],' a moody, counter-culture actor who represents the romanticist side of Dylan, but says accolades are never his motivation". Posthumously, on 23 February 2008, he shared the 2007 Independent Spirit Robert Altman Award with the rest of the film's ensemble cast, its director, and its casting director.
In his penultimate film role, Ledger played the Joker in Christopher Nolan's 2008 film The Dark Knight, which was released nearly six months after his death. While working on the film in London, Ledger told Sarah Lyall in their New York Times interview that he viewed The Dark Knight's Joker as a "psychopathic, mass murdering, schizophrenic clown with zero empathy". For his performance in The Dark Knight, Ledger posthumously won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor (becoming the fourth-youngest winner of the award) which his family accepted on his behalf, as well as numerous other posthumous awards, including the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor, which Nolan accepted for him. At the time of his death on 22 January 2008, Ledger had completed about half of the work for his final film role as Tony in Terry Gilliam's The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus. Gilliam chose to adapt the film after his death by having fellow actors (and friends of Ledger) Johnny Depp, Jude Law, and Colin Farrell play "fantasy transformations" of his character so that Ledger's final performance could be seen in theatres.
Ledger had aspirations to become a film director and had made some music videos with his production company The Masses, which director Todd Haynes praised highly in his tribute to Ledger upon accepting the ISP Robert Altman Award, which Ledger posthumously shared, on 23 February 2008. In 2006, Ledger directed music videos for the title track on Australian hip hop artist N'fa's CD debut solo album Cause An Effect and for the single "Seduction Is Evil (She's Hot)". Later that year, Ledger inaugurated a new record label, The Masses Music, with singer Ben Harper and also directed a music video for Harper's song "Morning Yearning".
At a news conference at the 2007 Venice Film Festival, Ledger spoke of his desire to make a documentary film about the British singer-songwriter Nick Drake, who died in 1974, at the age of 26, from an overdose of an antidepressant. Ledger created and acted in a music video set to Drake's recording of the singer's 1974 song about depression "Black Eyed Dog" – a title "inspired by Winston Churchill's descriptive term for depression" (black dog); it was shown publicly only twice, first at the Bumbershoot Festival, in Seattle, held from 1 to 3 September 2007; and secondly as part of "A Place To Be: A Celebration of Nick Drake", with its screening of Their Place: Reflections On Nick Drake, "a series of short filmed homages to Nick Drake" (including Ledger's), sponsored by American Cinematheque, at the Grauman's Egyptian Theatre, in Hollywood, on 5 October 2007. After Ledger's death, his music video for "Black Eyed Dog" was shown on the Internet and excerpted in news clips distributed via YouTube.
He was working with Scottish screenwriter and producer Allan Scott on an adaptation of the 1983 novel The Queen's Gambit by Walter Tevis, which would have been his first feature film as a director. He also intended to act in the film, with Canadian actor Elliot Page proposed in the lead role. Ledger's final directorial work, in which he shot two music videos before his death, premiered in 2009. The music videos, completed for Modest Mouse and Grace Woodroofe, include an animated feature for Modest Mouse's song, "King Rat", and the Woodroofe video for her cover of David Bowie's "Quicksand". The "King Rat" video premiered on 4 August 2009.
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We weren’t sure Michelle Williams would ever get this serious with someone again. So when we found out she had secretly wed singer-songwriter Phil Elverum last month, we knew they shared something special. And in the newest issue of People, a source confirms the Venom star “is very happy” in her new relationship. Related: Heath Ledger’s Dad Speaks Out On Michelle’s Secret Wedding! Michelle lost Matilda‘s father Heath Ledger tragically young. That loss is something she shares with her husband — he lost his wife, cartoonist GeneviÃ¨ve CastrÃ©e, to cancer when their daughter was just a year old. The insider says the couple share a bond over that and more:
“Michelle and Phil had an early spiritual connection that she has not experienced since Heath. They share some of life’s most trying moments with deaths of loved ones and have related on many levels.”
Heath Ledger‘s family is “terribly happy” for Michelle Williams over her secret marriage. As we reported, the 37-year-old actress wed indie rocker Phil Elverum in a small ceremony in upstate New York earlier this month. Among the few guests included Michelle and Heath’s 12-year-old daughter, Matilda. Related: Demi Lovato Visited In Hospital By Ex Wilmer Valderrama Though Heath’s father, Kim Ledger, didn’t attend the small ceremony, he told The Sydney Morning Herald’s The Goss that the family is nothing but happy for his late son’s ex. Noting that he had not met Michelle’s new husband but would do so “soon,” Kim revealed:
“We are terribly happy, it is greatâ€¦ She’s very private and I don’t really like to make too many comments about her, but we are very happy [for her].”