The Dark Knight was released in 2008 to widespread critical acclaim, with much of that heaped upon star Heath Ledger. The actor died months before the Batman Begins sequel arrived in theaters and later earned a posthumous "Best Supporting Actor" Oscar for his groundbreaking performance as The Joker.
Ledger died from an accidental overdose resulting from the abuse of prescribed medications, though it's long been theorised that getting into the Clown Prince of Crime's mind contributed to that (he was said to have suffered from insomnia, a condition worsened when dealing with intense acting roles).
It was a tragic death, regardless, but his work in the Christopher Nolan-helmed blockbuster has rightly earned him "icon" status in Hollywood.
Now, some brand new photos of Ledger applying his Joker makeup have found their way online. Providing fascinating insights into how the actor underwent this drastic transformation, they offer a candid look at how he helped create this memorable take on the classic Batman baddie.
Unfortunately, the Tweet/X below doesn't provide a source for where these photos came from (drop us a message in the comments section below if you have any insights). However, we're hoping higher-quality pictures will eventually surface as these really are something special.
For now, we remain grateful to have seen what Ledger was able to do with The Joker on screen. Prior to the actor's death, Nolan is said to have had tentative plans for the villain to cameo in The Dark Knight Rises, though the notion of him returning for a larger role than that was never seemingly discussed.
Take a closer look at these new photos below.
In The Dark Knight, with the help of allies Lt. Jim Gordon and DA Harvey Dent, Batman has been able to keep a tight lid on crime in Gotham City. But when a vile young criminal calling himself the Joker suddenly throws the town into chaos, the caped Crusader begins to tread a fine line between heroism and vigilantism.
The movie's ensemble cast includes Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Heath Ledger, Gary Oldman, Aaron Eckhart, Maggie Gyllenhaal, and Morgan Freeman. It would go on to become the first superhero movie to gross over $1 billion at the worldwide box office.