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Did Heath Ledger Die Because Of The Joker Role?

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One of the most asked question, how did Heath Ledger die? Heath Andrew Ledger is known for his role as Joker in Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight that won an Oscar for Supporting role. But sadly, Heath Ledger wasn’t alive to receive the award. Fans rejoiced to his tremendous acting and dialogue delivery as Joker and also felt bad for his death. Ledger was an Australian actor born on April 4, 1979, he debuted his career with Clowning Around in 1992.

What movies did Heath Ledger act?

Did Heath Ledger Die Because Of The Joker Role6
10 Things I Hate About You

Here are a list of movies and television shows he has acted in:

  • Clowning Around(1992) – Played as an Orphan Clown.
  • Ship to Shore(1993 – 1996) – Appeared in three episodes from 1993 to 1994 as Cyclist.
  • Sweat(1996) – Ledger played the role of Snowy Bowles and his role was recurring.
  • Home and Away(1997) – Played Scott Irwin in the show, its regarded as one of Australia’s most successful TV shows.
  • Roar(1997) – Ledger played the role of Conor in this fantasy-drama.
  • Blackrock(1997) – This Australian movie gave feature film debut to the actor played the role of Toby.
  • 10 Things I Hate About You(1999) – Heath Ledger got his break appearing in the movie as Patrick Verona.
  • Two hands(1999) – An acclaimed film in which Ledger played Jimmy and was directed by Gregor Jordan.

He then acted in many movies in lead and supporting roles from 2000 to 2005 such as The Patriot (2000), Monster’s Ball (2001), 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).

His role in Brokeback Mountain(2005) won him a New York Film Critics Circle Award and the Best International Actor Award from the Australian Film Institute.

What projects did heath Ledger direct?

Cause an Effect, Seduction is Evil (She’s Hot), Morning Yearning, Black Eyed Dog, Quicksand, and King Rat. All of them were made in the years 2006-2009. Heath Ledger acted in a few and all of them are music videos.

How much did Heath Ledger’s top movies gross?

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A Knight’s Tale

Having 23 acting credits in total, Heath Ledger’s high grossing movies were The Patriot which grossed $113,330,342, Brokeback Mountain had a gross of $83,043,761, and A Knight’s Tale with a gross of $56,569,702. All of them considered being lifetime gross. Putting all of these together, Ledger has another movie which is the highest-grossing movie he as acted in, The Dark Knight which had a lifetime gross of  $535,234,033.

What Health problems did Heath Ledger face?

Did Heath Ledger Die Because Of The Joker Role4

When the actor completed his roles in I’m Not There (2007) and The Dark Knight (2008), he couldn’t sleep much. In a New York Times interview, Ledger spoke about his insomnia:

“Last week I probably slept an average of two hours a night. … I couldn’t stop thinking. My body was exhausted, and my mind was still going.

In January 2008, Heath Ledger complained to his co-star Christopher Plummer, from The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus that his problem with sleep was still there and continuing. Plummer spoke about it:

we all caught colds because we were shooting outside on horrible, damp nights. But Heath’s went on and I don’t think he dealt with it immediately with the antibiotics… I think what he did have was walking pneumonia. He was saying all the time, “dammit, I can’t sleep”… and he was taking all these pills to help him.

Sleeping was the ultimate trouble Ledger faced. Michelle Williams his former fiancée also confirmed the same thing:

For as long as I’d known him, he had bouts with insomnia. He had too much energy. His mind was turning, turning, turning – always turning.

How did Heath Ledger die? What was his cause of death?

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Death of Heath Ledger

It was shocking back in 2009 to hear the news of his death. He died on the afternoon of 22 January 2008. Many assumed his cause of death to be the role of Joker which brought him to the edge and made him do things that lead to his death. But after a few days, the doctors publicized the reports and revealed his actual cause of death to be a drug overdose. The reports concluded:

Mr. Heath Ledger died as the result of acute intoxication by the combined effects of oxycodone, hydrocodone, diazepam, temazepam, alprazolam, and doxylamine. We have concluded that the manner of death is an accident, resulting from the abuse of prescribed medications.

At the time of his death, The Dark Knight’s production was done and the movie had gone to the editing phase. The prequel, Batman Begins was already successful and fans were waiting for a sequel. Having such a strong story and fan base, The Dark Knight became a huge hit and blockbuster at the box office which Heath Ledger didn’t get to see. Ledger told this to Empire magazine in 2007 about his preparation for the role of Joker:

I sat around in a hotel room in London for about a month, locked myself away, formed a little diary and experimented with voices – it was important to try to find a somewhat iconic voice and laugh. I ended up landing more in the realm of a psychopath – someone with very little to no conscience towards his acts. He’s just an absolute sociopath, a cold-blooded, mass-murdering clown.

As published by the Independent, His father Kim Ledger disclosed in a german documentary, Too Young To Die that Heath Ledger maintained a diary when he was locked up and that dairy contained pictures of comic strips, hyenas, clowns and Malcolm McDowell’s picture as Alex in A Clockwork Orange. Kim told the filmmakers about the actor’s practice for roles.

He pretty well locked himself up in a hotel room for weeks. He galvanized the upcoming character. That was typical of Heath. He would do that. He liked to dive into his characters, but this time he really took it up a notch.

I guess this answers the question: How did heath Ledger die? The real reason for Heath Ledger’s death is out in the open.

How much was Heath Ledger’s net worth when he died?

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Heath Ledger as Joker from The Dark Knight

He might have made quite a look of money from The Dark Knight, but his death happened before its release, so he was left with $16 million becoming his total net worth.

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