Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Stars Remember Heath Ledger At The Dark Knight Premiere

Heath Ledger's family and co-stars paid tribute to the late actor at Monday night's Dark Knight premiere in New York City. His father Kim and his wife Ines (Heath's stepmother) flew in from Australia for the event. As he left the screening, Kim gave reporters a thumbs-up. Along with Heath's older sister Kate, Heath's mother Sally Bell and her husband also attended.

"He gives a master performance," Aaron Eckhart, who plays district attorney Harvey Dent (a.k.a. Two-Face), told "I am honored and proud to be in this film with him." Added co-star Maggie Gyllenhaal (who plays attorney Rachel Dawes): "He’s remarkable, he’s inspiring."

Actor Gary Oldman, who takes on the role of Lieutenant Jim Gordon, called Heath's performance as the Joker "electric." Co-star Michael Caine, who plays butler Alfred Pennyworth, told Us he'd be "very surprised" if Heath didn't nab an Oscar nomination. "He’s got my vote," Caine said.

"What we wanted to do was create a villain that's iconic and terrifying, I think, but also recognizably human," director Christopher Nolan told the Associated Press. "And I think Heath does that in a very interesting way - I think people are going to be blown away."

Christian Bale, who plays the Caped Crusader, said it was "tragic [Heath] is not here, but I am here to see his talents and celebrate it, and I hope everybody will." The film, already sold out in some cities, is getting rave reviews from critics. Rolling Stone's Peter Travers gave it 3.5 stars out of four, saying The Dark Knight is an "absolute stunner" and that Heath is "mad-crazy-blazing brilliant as the Joker." Heath died of an accidental prescription drug overdose at age 28 in January.


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