, The character's mannerisms carry a quality of unpredictability. Heath … 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. , Application of Heath Ledger's makeup was done with the actor scrunching special facial expressions. He spent several years trying desperately to sway this image, but this was a double-edged sword. Take a look at the film and television career of Sylvie's Love star Tessa Thompson. He tricks four of them into killing each other, then kills the last one himself and escapes with the money. " In his 2016 book The Caped Crusade: Batman and the Rise of Nerd Culture, NPR contributor Glen Weldon recalled that fans were outraged over the choice of Ledger, due to his past roles in films such as Brokeback Mountain (2005). He then blows up the hospital and takes a busload of hostages. The Joker's hair is stringy, unkempt, and dyed green. , —Heath Ledger on why he preferred playing the super-villain. Loeb, who had been critical of Jack Nicholson's portrayal of the Joker in 1989's Batman, expressed his excitement for Ledger's interpretation, saying the casting felt "just about right. , On 22 January 2008, after he had completed filming The Dark Knight, Ledger died, aged 28, of an accidental prescription drug overdose, leading to intense press attention and memorial tributes. " Casting director John Papsidera reflected on the casting choice, saying the filmmakers knew they needed somebody courageous to play the part. Heath Ledger turned down playing the … Scrap book features pictures of hyenas and clowns, and comic strips The actor developed the physical appearance of the character, being "very involved" with the painting of his face, says prosthetic supervisor Conor O'Sullivan. Batman saves Dent, who is disfigured in the explosion, but Rachel is killed. Joker's Henchman (uncredited) Tommy Bartlett ... Maroni's D.A.  Nolan explained Ledger's early and "peculiar" ambition for the voice of the character, saying that the actor had studied the way ventriloquist dummies talk. Image Source : HEATH LEDGER/ INSTAGRAM For the unversed, The Dark Knight grossed over $1 billion at the box office with Heath Ledger bagging Best Supporting Actor Oscar posthumously.  Heath Ledger was cast before there was a script. This technique created facial textures for white paint. " "It's just one of the most iconic movie performances of modern times", declared chief film critic of Variety Scott Foundas. , Ledger developed the Joker's voice and mannerisms slowly over time and during camera tests. And in 2008, Christian Bale's Batman found his in Heath Ledger's demented dervish, the Joker. , "I can only speak superlatives of Ledger, who is mad-crazy-brilliant as the Joker", wrote Peter Travers of Rolling Stone, stating that the film is deeper than its predecessor, with a "deft" script that refuses to scrutinize the Joker with popular psychology. A sloppy red grin is painted across his mouth and cheeks, partly obscuring the scars of a Glasgow smile. While test recording without sound, he shared his take on the Joker's voice and physicality, and "in that way he sort of sneaked upon it".. Later, the Joker kills Gambol and takes over his gang. , Ledger's death affected the marketing campaign for The Dark Knight and also both the production and marketing of Terry Gilliam's film The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus; both Nolan and Gilliam celebrated and paid tribute to Ledger's work in these films. , However, with the first trailer released in 2007, the film and its portrayal of the Joker received very positive response from audiences and entertainment industry professionals alike. This is the definitive Joker", calling the performance "a masterpiece". ... A force of nature". Do I really look like a guy with a plan, Harvey? As the Joker wears a mask through the scene with minimal dialogue, Nolan set the prologue first in the schedule because he wanted to put off performance worries, allowing Ledger to enjoy that relief. " Emanuel Levy wrote Ledger "throws himself completely" into the role. , As a starting actor, Heath Ledger did not attach himself seriously to the roles he was playing.  Highlighting the opportunity for freshness, Ledger aimed for a new and different interpretation of the character, separate from previous film incarnations. In the film, he wears the character's traditional purple and green color palette, while his facial appearance includes clown makeup that covers facial scars of a Glasgow smile, and green hair. No need to waste time endlessly browsing—here's the entire lineup of new movies and TV shows streaming on Netflix this month. However, Nolan kept him on his list, and was his first option when casting the Joker for The Dark Knight.  Travers said Ledger moves the Joker away from Jack Nicholson's interpretation into darker territory, and expressed his support for any potential campaign to have Ledger nominated for an Academy Award. By. Bale confirmed that Ledger did not perform the Joker's voice during rehearsals, waiting to get in character when the cameras rolled. The physicality reminds me of the great silent comedians. It's hard to get a handle on how those elements combine. ", "Heath Ledger Discusses Delving into Dylan For I'm Not There and Channeling Sid Vicious for the Dark Knight", "Writer/Director Christopher Nolan Talks About 'The Dark Knight, "A look inside Heath Ledger's sinister Joker journal", "Arkham Asylum Scribe Grant Morrison Opens Up on Heath Ledger's Joker Diary", "Giving Voice to the Villain Presents Quite the Acting Challenge", "Writer/Director Christopher Nolan Talks About 'The Dark Knight' And Heath Ledger's Incredible Performance", "Indy, Batman, Narnia All Return in 2008", "Making the Joker: Heath Ledger and Jared Leto's Makeup Artists on the Job of a Lifetime", "5 Stories You've Never Heard Before About Heath Ledger As The Joker", "Christopher Nolan revisits his favorite scene in Dark Knight", "Nolan Talks DARK KNIGHT Blu-Ray, a 100,000 Person Screening of the Film (Featuring Live Q & A w/ Nolan), TDK Sequel, and More!! The Joker then laughs hysterically as he is arrested by a SWAT team. After playing roles in several Australian television and film productions during the 1990s, Ledger moved to the United States in 1998 to further develop his film career. The Joker gets a new solo series beginning in March 2021. Heath Ledger's turn as the Joker in the 2008 blockbuster film "The Dark Knight" is one of the most captivating portrayals of a supervillain in film history. The actor was found dead … "Everything about what he does from every gesture, every little facial tick, everything he's doing with his voice—it all speaks to the heart of this character. A psychopathic criminal mastermind and mass murderer with a warped, sadistic sense of humor, the Joker is hired by Gotham City's mob bosses to kill the vigilante Batman (Christian Bale), and also comes into conflict with Batman's allies, Gotham police officer James Gordon (Gary Oldman) and district attorney Harvey Dent (Aaron Eckhart). Warner Bros., Blu-Ray DVD. Tom Holland Rushes to Be First in Wishing Jake Gyllenhaal a Happy 40th Birthday, The Internet Wants Chadwick Boseman To Get An Oscar For His New Netflix Movie, Joker Gets His Own DC Comics Series for First Time in 45 Years, The Billion-Dollar Film Club: 46 Movies to Reach $1 Billion Worldwide, Biggest Golden Globe-Nominated Transformations Over the Years, Top 30 Highest-Grossing Comic Book Movies, Favourite Cast Member Of The Dark Knight Trilogy, The 2006 Australian Film Institute Awards, TGIF's Look at '10 Things I Hate About You', Remembering Heath Ledger - A Tribute to the Legendary Actor/Superstar, Endless Summer: 30 Years of Home and Away, This Will Change The Way You Watch '10 Things I Hate About You', The Fire Rises: The Creation and Impact of the Dark Knight Trilogy, Heath Ledger zhou nian ji, si suo bei shang zai guang ying liu zhuan zhong man man pin chang.  At the end of shooting, on his Joker diary's final page, Ledger wrote "BYE BYE". The Joker is not mentioned in The Dark Knight Rises, the 2012 sequel to The Dark Knight, out of respect for Ledger's memory. , Ledger and Christopher Nolan both explained seeing eye-to-eye on the Joker's appearance in the film, sharing common reference points for who the character was going to be. , – Scrawlings from Heath Ledger's Joker diary, During a span of six weeks, Ledger "locked" himself away in a hotel room, forming a character diary and experimenting with voices. Going by one of the people involved, Grumpy's response about splitting it u… "Don't act, just read it", Nolan had told Ledger for a test screening. MMTDK-01: The Joker, from the Christopher Nolan directed Batman masterpiece: The Dark Knight (2008). Heath Ledger's father reveals dead actor's 'Joker diary' written during The Dark Knight. The Joker then escapes the police station with Lau. His shoes have an upward swoop at the toe, reminiscent of clown shoes. Realizing that they were movies he himself might not actually have wanted to see, it made him more cautious and respectful towards his professional choices. " Costume designer Lindy Hemming picked inspiration for the "chaotic" look from such countercultural pop culture artists as Iggy Pop, Johnny Rotten, and Sid Vicious. The Joker kills Lau and the Chechen, burns his half of the mob's money and takes over the Chechen's gang. The Riddler? The Joker rigs explosives on two ferries leaving the Gotham bay, one containing citizens and the other transporting criminals, and tells the passengers that he will destroy both boats unless one blows up the other by midnight. Ledger's interpretation of the Joker is specifically influenced by the graphic novels Batman: The Killing Joke and Arkham Asylum: A Serious House on Serious Earth. By Ben Sherlock Nov 16, 2020 The Fire Rises: The Creation and Impact of the Dark Knight Trilogy, 2013. The Joker is a fictional character who appears in Christopher Nolan's 2008 superhero film The Dark Knight, based upon the DC Comics character and supervillain of the same name. , Steve Alexander, Heath Ledger's agent, said the actor had a "pay-or-play" deal on The Dark Knight, "so he felt free to do whatever he wanted to do as the Joker, no matter how crazy." The Joker himself posed as one of his thugs, going by the call-sign Bozo. While meeting for the part of Batman in Batman Begins, Ledger explained that he was not interested in working on such a film.  Gilliam helped Ledger put on a clown act for that film, an experience the actor later acknowledged as an influence for his performance as the Joker. Batman subsequently apprehends the Joker, who states that he believes that they are meant to fight each other forever. The Joker?  She gave the image for the Joker of someone who is "very sweaty" and who "probably doesn't have a proper home". , Film critics, co-stars Maggie Gyllenhaal and Michael Caine, and many of Ledger's colleagues in the film community joined Bale in calling for and predicting a nomination for the 2008 Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor in recognition of Ledger's performance in The Dark Knight. When the film was released in July 2008, six months after Ledger died from an accidental overdose, the performance received universal acclaim and numerous posthumous accolades, including the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.  Ledger was given Alan Moore's graphic novel Batman: The Killing Joke for preparation for the role, as well as Grant Morrison's graphic novel Arkham Asylum: A Serious House on Serious Earth, which he "really tried to read and put it down". Wearing the character's traditional color palette, the Joker is dressed in a light purple shirt, a thin medium toned purple tie and a green waistcoat, topped by a dark purple overcoat. However, the novelization of the film makes an ambiguous reference to the character while describing Blackgate Prison: Now that the Dent Act had made it all but impossible to cop an insanity plea, it had replaced Arkham Asylum as the preferred location for imprisoning both convicted and suspected felons. Friday and The Dark Knight Actor Tommy 'Tiny' Lister Dead at 62. He spent several years trying desperately to sway this image, but this was a double-edged sword. Nope, the only actors who were scared and petrified of Heath Ledger as Joker were Michael Caine (Alfred) and Maggie Gyllenhaal (Rachel). The Batman: 10 Actors Who Could Play The Joker For Matt Reeves. , Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times stated that Heath Ledger's portrayal is a "key performance" and pondered whether he would become the first posthumous Academy Award-winning actor since Peter Finch in 1976. Director Christopher Nolan talks about his conversations with Heath Ledger about the Joker. , Ledger highlighted the importance of finding an iconic voice and laugh for the character, relating the voice as "the key to the demented killer".  Film critic Peter Travers wrote about the Joker as having "the grungy hair and the yellowing teeth of a hound fresh out of hell". ", "Heath Ledger's Creepy Joker Diary Revealed", "Dark Knight Director Shuns Digital Effects for the Real Thing", "Batman's Burden: A Director Confronts Darkness and Death", "Production Suspended on Heath Ledger's Latest Movie", "Ledger's Death Puts Last Films in a Bind", "Robin Williams' Batman Near Misses! " However, later impressed with Batman Begins, Ledger sought the part of the Joker from Nolan.  The 2005 fantasy film The Brothers Grimm marked a turning point for the actor as director Terry Gilliam gave Ledger (and his co-star, Matt Damon) opportunities to create characters they had not been given before. American Batman writers Paul Dini and Jeph Loeb both chimed with the positive reactions. Staff and agencies.  As Ledger was cast early in pre-production, Nolan explained that the actor had "months and months" to prepare for the role. Total Film reviewed that Ledger is "burning brightly as he embodies an icon.  It was revealed that Ledger had read Grant Morrison's writing of The Clown at Midnight (Batman #663) and based the list upon the Batman writer's prose. The patterns and designs chosen were very popular during the Victorian and Edwardian periods; however, they are given an eccentric twist using the purple and green color palette. Caglione called the application work "a dance". Five small-time criminals served under the Joker in the robbery of Gotham National Bank,& four of which were methodically or accidentally killed off in the heist. The Dark Knight Trilogy; The Dark Knight actor Tommy “Tiny” Lister has died. "And no matter how banged-up or bruised Heath was after a long day, after we'd take off the last drop of makeup, he'd just hug everybody in the trailer before he left". "It was tremendously emotional, right when he passed, having to go back in and look at him every day [during editing]", Nolan recalled. During the ensuing panic, the Joker sneaks into Gotham General Hospital disguised as a nurse to meet with Dent and persuades him to take revenge on the people he holds responsible for Rachel's death.  Nolan has dedicated the film in part to Ledger's memory. CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (, Arkham Asylum: A Serious House on Serious Earth, Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture, BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role, Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role, "Heath Ledger's Joker inspired by Tom Waits? Another I feel like this is an opportunity for me to not take myself too seriously, and for some reason, I just gravitated towards [The Joker] and I knew I had something to give to him. "It's a combination of reading all the comic books I could that were relevant to the script and then just closing my eyes and meditating on it", he said about his process. https://www.menshealth.com/entertainment/g29365030/joker-actors-list Mexican filmmaker Guillermo del Toro gushed of his impression for Ledger's performance, finding it "really, really edgy and scary". Time: 00:51:20. The Joker announces that people will die each day until Batman reveals his true identity, and makes good on his threat by assassinating Gotham Police Commissioner Gillian B. Loeb (Colin McFarlane) and mob trial Judge Janet Surillo (Nydia Rodriguez Terracina). No one was more surprised by the demise of Gambol in The Dark Knight than actor Michael Jai White, who played the menacing gangster. 79 wins & 60 nominations. "But the truth is, I feel very lucky to have something productive to do, to have a performance that he was very, very proud of, and that he had entrusted to me to finish.  He carries no identification of any kind and offers no clear details about his true name or background; when he is arrested by the Gotham City police, they find only knives and lint in his pockets. A psychopathic criminal mastermind and mass murderer with a warped, sadistic sense of humor, the Joker is hired by Gotham City's mob bosses to kill the vigilante Batman (Christian Bale), and also comes into conflict with Batman's allies, Gotham police officer James Gordon (Gary Oldman) … , The first sequence shot was the film's IMAX opening, the "prologue". In addition, largely due to that incarnation's popularity that regarded his very dark nature, several later incarnations of the Joker were depicted in a similarly dark manner. The Joker was portrayed by the late Heath Ledger as the main antagonist of The Dark Knight, a role that won him a posthumous Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. Tim Teeman commented for The Times that "Ledger is so terrifying and unpredictable that his very presence on screen makes you nervous." " All of Ledger's scenes appear as he completed them in the filming; in editing the film, Nolan added no digital effects to alter Ledger's actual performance posthumously. His face is covered in a cracked and runny layer of white clown makeup, with his sunken eyes thickly rimmed in black.  O'Sullivan acknowledged how Ledger, Nolan, and makeup artist John Caglione all gravitated towards a Francis Bacon painting Nolan was referring to. He Kept A Joker Diary To Get Into Character. Nolan noted, "We gave a Francis Bacon spin to [his face]. He was played by late Australian actor Heath Ledger. Of course, Ledger’s Joker performance in The Dark Knight was just as lauded as the one Phoenix gave in Joker, as it earned him the Best Supporting Actor award at the 2009 Academy Awards.  "Heath was just ready to do it, he was ready to do something that big. As Ledger closed his eyes tight, Caglione put on the black makeup. The character is indirectly referenced at the end of Batman Begins, when Lt. James Gordon (Gary Oldman) describes to Batman (Christian Bale) a suspect wanted in connection with an armed robbery and double homicide. It's grubby.  Impressed with Ledger's determination, Nolan cast him in the part. , —Christopher Nolan on Ledger's performance.. Ledger's Joker also explores techniques found in the actor's previous performances, including his clown act in Terry Gilliam's fantasy film The Brothers Grimm, while also referencing paintings by artist Francis Bacon, Anthony Burgess' novel A Clockwork Orange, and various punk rock musicians, as well as a vocal style rumoured to be influenced by Tom Waits.. The Joker, incarnated with chilling authority by the actor, is simply one of the most twisted and mesmerizing creeps in movie history.".  About the Joker's physical appearance, Geoff Boucher wrote for the Los Angeles Times that the character probes the facial scars with his tongue and "walks with shoulders bowed and his chin out and down, like a hyena". Joker is the Dark Knight's most iconic villain, but who will play the character in The Batman? Gordon shows Batman a joker playing card left at the crime scene. Nolan was impressed enough with the first video shoot that he chose to not be present when Ledger shot the video with a kidnapped reporter (Anthony Michael Hall).  Nolan remembered the cynicism he endured surrounding Ledger's casting, saying that "the whole world turned around and said 'What are you doing?' Ledger's casting as the Joker was initially controversial but it is now considered his finest performance; Ledger himself regarded it as his most enjoyable. , Heath Ledger always showed up early onset. Nobody was really sure. The Joker first appears in person at the beginning of The Dark Knight, as part of a six-member gang wearing clown masks who rob a mob-owned bank. More than just a story of good versus evil, The Dark Knight was a film that shattered the box office in 2008, telling the gripping tale of the struggle between Batman and best supporting actor Heath Ledger as the Joker. The Dark Knight: Paul Bettany Was Rumored To Play The Joker When Batman Begins was in development, Christopher Nolan offered Heath Ledger the role of Batman, but they both agreed that he was not the right one for it. Heath Ledger as the Joker in 2008's "The Dark Knight." Ever. Gambol refuses the offer and puts a bounty on the "clown". One of the greatest tragedies to strike previously was the death of Heath Ledger, who played the Joker in The Dark Knight. I am Until, almost tenderly, he turns inside out through his mouth. The Joker embodies themes of chaos, anarchy and obsession: throughout the film, he expresses a desire to upset the social order in Gotham through crime, and defines himself by his conflict with Batman. During rehearsals, the actors kept things loose and improvisational, saving for the actual shoot. , Heath Ledger described the Joker as a "psychopathic, mass murdering, schizophrenic clown with zero empathy". The Joker reveals that Dent's girlfriend (and Bruce Wayne's childhood sweetheart) Rachel Dawes (Maggie Gyllenhaal) has also gone missing and divulges their separate locations, both rigged with time bombs, but lies about which location each hostage is held at. While Batman fights the Joker, the ferry passengers choose not to blow each other up, Batman bluntly informing the Joker that, despite his attempt to prove "that deep down, everyone's as ugly as [him]", the Joker is alone in his corruption and insanity. Christopher Hooton, writing for The Independent, said that the 'Joker journal' had several stills from Stanley Kubrick's film A Clockwork Orange, joker cards, photos of hyenas, unhinged clown makeup and the word "chaos" highlighted in green. (Warner Bros.) Also released in 2008, the war thriller “The Hurt Locker” saw Bigelow win the Oscar for Best Director. The first thing he would do, according to Caglione, was to give bear hugs to cast and crew members around the set. ", "Heath Ledger is magnificent. The Dark Knight actor recalls how he could have died during the Joker's pencil trick. " Mark Lee, writing for The Daily Telegraph, commented that Ledger accomplished "a genuinely unsettling, brilliant nuanced portrait of evil". 0. Here we've … By Spencer Perry - December 10, ... appearing as one of the main players during one of The Joker… Denby called Ledger "mesmerising" and said, "His performance is a heroic, unsettling final act: this young actor looked into the abyss. , Director Christopher Nolan had met with Ledger over the years for different roles. In hair and makeup tests, Ledger would start exploring the movements of the character. ", Heath Ledger's portrayal of the Joker received widespread critical acclaim, winning numerous posthumous awards for his performance, including the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, a Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture, the BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role, the Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actor, a Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role, and a Best Actor International Award at the 2008 Australian Film Institute Awards.  Entertainment Weekly put the film on its end-of-the-decade, "best-of" list, saying, "Every great hero needs a great villain. Just like with James Bond, or even Batman himself, it’s no small news when an actor signs on to play the infamous Dark Knight nemesis. (The Dark Knight is a kid when “Joker” takes place, so Arthur meeting young Bruce Wayne involves a red clown nose rather than a Batarang.) But other actors were up for the roles. It all speaks to this idea of a character who's devoted to a concept of pure anarchy and chaos.  Travers praised the cast, saying each brings his or her "'A' game" to the film. Each take Ledger made was different from the last. You know what I am, Harvey? John Caglione described Ledger as helping others around to relax, never letting "the intense nature of the roles overwhelm him". Heath Andrew Ledger (4 April 1979 – 22 January 2008) was an Australian actor, photographer, and music video director. Then, water was sprayed over the eyes and the actor would squeeze his eyes and shake his head to create imperfections in the makeup. Jay Yaws-December 15, 2020. It has a bit of, "Inside. Nolan acknowledges this unpredictability to be part of the character's slinky physical movements as well, saying that Ledger's performance "[is] always a surprise". Here are his 10 best. 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