50 Greatest Heath Ledger Movie Moments

Fire Starter

The Moment: Ledger strikes out in the USA, landing the role of ‘bad guy’ Patrick (yeah, scary name) in 10 Things I Hate About You . In an early classroom scene, he plays with Bunsen burner flames and generally scares the crap out of Joseph Gordon-Levitt.

Ledger Magic: All frowny and set-jawed, Ledger makes for the perfect teen heartthrob.

Wind Tunnel

The Moment: The opening credits for Candy have Ledger and Abbie Cornish getting into a spinning fairground ride, which lifts them off their feet. Magic.

Ledger Magic: There’s no dialogue, but your eyes are glued to Ledger – this guy’s a star, no doubt about it.

The Joker

The Moment: “Whatever doesn’t kill you simply make you stranger ,” quips The Joker in a gravelly bark, as he unmasks for the first time during The Dark Knight ’s standout bank job opener.

Ledger Magic: Wonder how Ledge was going to top Jack Nicholson’s Joker? This is the first hint at the brilliance of his new interpretation.


The Moment: William (Ledger) reunites with his father in A Knight's Tale , who at first doesn’t recognise his voice, but soon realises the truth.

Ledger Magic: It’s an emotional moment, but Ledger knows exactly how to stop tipping into over sentimentality.

Going Viral

The Moment: The Joker’s kidnapped a Batman impersonator, and recorded a video that he’s leaked to the press as he interrogates the poor fella. Only at the end of the video does he peer, leering into the lens like the madman that he is.

Ledger Magic: All the tension and terror relies entirely on Ledger’s voice, as he operates the camera from behind. Chillingly effective.

Bust Up

The Moment: A young Ledger appears in Blackrock , getting into a fist fight at a disco over a girl. Yes, a girl. Ledger lands a good right hook before being head butted. Oof.

Ledger Magic: “Fuck off you fuckin’ hoon!” Ledger proves he can play tough like the best of them.

Money, Money, Money

The Moment: The Joker sets fire to a massive pile of money, on top of which sits Lau (Ng Chin Han), accountant to the mob. Some men just like to watch big piles of money burn.

Ledger Magic: Joker’s plans are coming together here, and Ledger revels in playing up his ruthless nature.

Little n Large

The Moment: In Dr Parnassus , Tony (Ledger) meets the diminutive Percy (Verne Troyer) for the first time – after waking up in a box and having to crawl out. As you do.

Ledger Magic : Ledger's ever the giving actor, playing the straight man to Troyer's wacko, with great results.

Joust Perfect

The Moment: Finally getting the hang of the whole jousting thing, William (Ledger) doesn’t even bother to don a helmet anymore. Cor blimey.

Ledger Magic : One of the few times that Ledger got to pull an 'action man' pose, and he nails it.


The Moment: In I’m Not There , Robbie (Ledger) comes out of a restaurant to find somebody across the street taking a photograph of him. There’s no escape for the famous.

Ledger Magic: That set look of despising is a masterpiece.

Josh Winning has worn a lot of hats over the years. Contributing Editor at Total Film, writer for SFX, and senior film writer at the Radio Times. Josh has also penned a novel about mysteries and monsters, is the co-host of a movie podcast, and has a library of pretty phenomenal stories from visiting some of the biggest TV and film sets in the world. He would also like you to know that he "lives for cat videos..." Don't we all, Josh. Don't we all.