Yesterday marked the tenth anniversary of Heath Ledger's death and even a decade on, his performance as The Joker in The Dark Knight remains every bit as iconic. Now, director Christopher Nolan has weighed in on how the actor went about approaching the role of the iconic Batman villain and reveals just how private he was when it came to preparing to play the Clown Prince of Crime.
"A lot of what Heath did he would discuss with me," the filmmaker revealed in a recent interview about Ledger. "He'd sort of give me hints of what he was going to do and we'd talk about it a bit and I would try to be an audience for him, sort of gauge with him what he was doing but a lot of it was about unpredictability and I think he wanted to play his cards a little close to the chest."
Nolan went on to explain that Ledger took his time developing each part of his performance as The Joker and the director actually had little insight into any of that as shooting continued. "He would very gradually reveal to me the voice and the way he was going to do things, but not in one go, not 'here's the Joker.' We sort of watched him develop it with the wardrobe and the makeup and everything. I got to be a part of that creative process which was great fun, but on set there were always moments like that clapping or things he would do with his voice. His voice was always so unpredictable."
"I took huge pride in having been in any way involved with this great performer, this legacy," he added, praising Ledger's work as the villain. "He was an extraordinary person, an extraordinary actor and for him to be recognized in that way I think it was very meaningful for his family and meaningful for film history that what he contributed, and he contributed in many different ways to film history, but that it be marked in that way I was very proud to have been part of that," Nolan concluded.
What did you guys think about Ledger's take on The Joker? Does it still hold up for you a decade on? As always, be sure to let us know your thoughts on that and Nolan's remarks in the comments section.