It Was Not the Joker Who Killed Heath Ledger, Said Sister


It Was Not the Joker Who Killed Heath Ledger, Said Sister


Heath's sister Kate Ledger debunked the rumor that Heath's death was caused by his role as Joker, saying that Heath was having fun portraying the character.
When Heath Ledger passed away in 2008, many people assumed that his death was caused by his role as the Joker in Batman movie "The Dark Knight". Rumor said that the role overwhelmed the actor, thus it led to depression and an overdose.

Heath's elder sister Kate Ledger, however, has debunked the rumor. To USA Today, Kate explained that "there was no doom and gloom" and Heath actually was having fun portraying Batman's nemesis.

"Honestly, that's been the biggest thing for us as a family," said Kate. "He had an amazing sense of humor and certainly playing the Joker, for him it was one big gag. He had so much fun doing that. It was actually the exact opposite. There was no doom and gloom.... That was a shock to me that people even thought that, really."

Derik Murray, who produces and co-directs new documentary about Heath titled "I Am Heath Ledger", also explained that Heath's death had nothing to do with his portrayal as Joker. "Like many of us, we read all sorts of insinuations online that Heath Ledger was taken down this dark spiral path to the depths of depression from his role as the Joker-this is the reason why we lost this bright star so early in his life," said Murray. "What was incredible, what was really quite amazing is that the truth behind that is so polar opposite."

"The Dark Knight", directed by Christopher Nolan, was released in 2007, with Christian Bale starring as the Caped Crusader and Heath playing his nemesis. The role of Joker won Heath a posthumous Oscar, which was received by Heath's father, mother and sister. Heath is the only actor who won an award for best supporting actor after death.

Heath died on January 22, 2008 at the age of 28 in New York City from an accidental overdose of prescription medication and sleeping aids. He left an 11-year-old daughter named Matilda whom he shared with his ex-girlfriend Michelle Williams.

Meanwhile, "I Am Heath Ledger" documentary hit selected U.S. theaters for a special one-night event on Wednesday, May 3. The documentary will air on Spike TV on May 17.


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