Got a Tip? Call TMZ at (888) 847-9869 or Click Here
READ NOW

TMZ SPORTS

  • FS1
    M-T-Th-F:
    9:00 PM PST

    W:
    9:30 PM PST
clock-iconREMIND ME TO WATCH

Heath Ledger

Powered by imdb

When hunky, twenty-year-old heart-throb Heath Ledger first came to the attention of the public in 1999, it was all too easy to tag him as a "pretty boy" and an actor of little depth. He spent several years trying desperately to sway this image, but this was a double-edged sword.Heath Ledger was born on the fourth of April 1979, in Perth, Western Australia, to Sally (Ramshaw), a teacher of French, and Kim Ledger, a mining engineer who also raced cars. As the story goes, in junior high school it was compulsory to take one of two electives, either cooking or drama. As Heath could not see himself in a cooking class he tried his hand at drama. Heath was talented, however the rest of the class did not acknowledge his talent. When he was seventeen he and a friend decided to pack up, leave school, take a car and rough it to Sydney. Heath believed Sydney to be the place where dreams were made or, at least, where actors could possibly get their big break. Upon arriving in Sydney with a purported sixty-nine cents to his name, Heath tried everything to get a break.His first real acting job came in a low-budget movie called Blackrock, a largely unimpressive cliché; an adolescent angst film about one boy's struggle when he learns his best mate raped a girl. He only had a very small role in the film. After that small role Heath auditioned for a role in a T.V. show called Sweat about a group of young Olympic hopefuls. He was offered one of two roles, one as a swimmer, another as a gay cyclist. Heath accepted the latter because he felt to really stand out as an actor one had to accept unique roles that stood out from the bunch. It got him small notice, but unfortunately the show was quickly axed, forcing him to look for other roles. He was in Home and Away for a very short period, in which he played a surfer who falls in love with one of the girls of Summer Bay. Then came his very brief role in Paws, a film which existed solely to cash in on guitar prodigy Nathan Cavaleri's brief moment of fame, where he was the hottest thing in Australia. Heath played a student in the film, involved in a stage production of a Shakespeare play, in which he played "Oberon". A very brief role, this offered him a small paycheck but did nothing to advance his career. Then came Two Hands. He went to the U.S. trying to audition for film roles, showcasing his brief role in Roar opposite then unknown Vera Farmiga.Then Australian director Gregor Jordan auditioned him for the lead in Two Hands, which he got. An in your face Aussie crime thriller, Two Hands was outstanding and helped him secure a role in 10 Things I Hate About You. After that, it seemed Heath was being typecast as a young hunk, which he did not like, so he accepted a role in a very serious war drama The Patriot.What followed was a stark inconsistency of roles, Ledger accepting virtually every single character role, anything to avoid being typecast. Some met with praise, like his short role in Monster's Ball, but his version of Ned Kelly was an absolute flop, which led distributors hesitant to even release it outside Australia. Heath finally had deserved success with his role in Brokeback Mountain, for which he was nominated for an Oscar and a B.A.F.T.A. Ledger was found dead on January 22, 2008 in his apartment in the Manhattan neighborhood of SoHo, with a bottle of prescription sleeping pills near-by. It was concluded weeks later that he died of an accidental overdose of prescription drugs that included pain-killers, sleeping pills and anti-anxiety medication. After his death he received more than thirty posthumous awards for his portrayal as the psychopathic clown prince of crime in The Dark Knight (including the Oscar, S.A.G., B.A.F.T.A., and Golden Globe)  See full bio on IMDb »

LATEST STORIES
  
Heath's Kid -- Little Angel

Heath's Kid -- Little Angel

Matilda Ledger is soooooo cute, her feet don't even touch the ground when she walks. READ MORE >

Heath's Baby Mama Won't Thank the Academy

Heath's Baby Mama Won't Thank the Academy

Cross Michelle Williams off the list of people who will accept awards on behalf of Heath Ledger if/when he cleans up during awards season.A rep for Williams tells TMZ, "No discussions have been… READ MORE >

- 2808 days ago
Heath's Pad -- Too Morbid Means No Bids

Heath's Pad -- Too Morbid Means No Bids

Seems the SoHo loft where Heath Ledger died last year is simply too ghoulish to sell.The rental listing for the $26,000-per-month pad has been pulled from the market, reports the New York Post.… READ MORE >

- 2819 days ago
Ledger's Life Insurance Co:  Suicide = No Cash

Ledger's Life Insurance Co: Suicide = No Cash

The company that wrote Heath Ledger's $10 million life insurance policy is being sued after claiming the actor's death might have been a suicide, even though officials concluded it was accidental.… READ MORE >

- 2886 days ago
The Cutest $20 Million Dollar Baby

The Cutest $20 Million Dollar Baby

With her umbrella in tow, precious two-year-old Matilda Rose Ledger took a leisurely stroll through NYC on Sunday.Matilda won't have to worry about rainy days much longer, as she will reportedly… READ MORE >

- 2886 days ago
Heath Ledger's Entire Estate Left to Daughter

Heath Ledger's Entire Estate Left to Daughter

After months of closed-door court meetings -- all of Heath Ledger's estimated $20 mil estate will go to his 2-year old daughter Matilda Rose.According to news reports, Heath's dad Kim Ledger says… READ MORE >

- 2887 days ago
Hefty Price Tag on Heath's Hearth

Hefty Price Tag on Heath's Hearth

The apartment where Heath Ledger died is available for rent, and apparently someone thinks the tragedy is good for business.Ledger's three-bedroom loft is on the market for $26,000 a month. The… READ MORE >

- 2918 days ago
Matilda Ledger Gives Mommy the Runaround

Matilda Ledger Gives Mommy the Runaround

Michelle Williams got her cardio workout in by chasing after her precious daughter Matilda down a NYC street on Wednesday.Heath's little lookalike turns three in October. See Also Daddy's Little… READ MORE >

- 2918 days ago
Daddy's Little Girl

Daddy's Little Girl

Lil' Matilda Rose is growing into a identical version of her dad Heath Ledger. Keep Mary-Kate far, far away from her. See Also Mary-Kate a Red Herring in Ledger-Gate  READ MORE >

- 2926 days ago
DEA -- What Were THEY Smoking?!

DEA -- What Were THEY Smoking?!

Sources connected with the Heath Ledger investigation say the Drug Enforcement Administration set a new low for starf**king.People who have talked to TMZ off the record are now willing to go on… READ MORE >

- 2939 days ago

Around The Web