One of the biggest commercial successes has been Todd Phillips, with the riveting Joaquin Phoenix, who all indicates that he will get his first gold statuette after 33 years in the art scene.

Actors like Jack Nicholson in 1989 in Tim Burton's "Batman" and Jared Leto in "Suicide Squad" in 2016 have played the eternal evil with the sardonic smile.

But no one has been able to become as perverted and terrifying the Joker as Heath Ledger in 2008 in "The Dark Knight." Christopher Nolan's hero was not just a clown, he was not just a serial killer, he was a mentally disturbed guy who wanted to destroy a rotten society.

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His face is deeply etched on Batman cinephiles and fans. He may have slipped the golden statuette through his hands for his performance as a gay cowboy on Brokeback Mountain, but he won the Academy Award for Best Actor for the ultimate evil Joker. But he did not live to hold it in his hands.

On January 22, 2008, he was found dead at his home in Manhattan. His death was attributed to a deadly cocktail of painkillers, anxiolytics and sleeping pills and was considered an accident and not a suicide. He was only 28 years old. But he seems to have seen his death before the movie even hit theaters.

Five years after Heath Ledger's death, a German documentary about his life was shown. In the episode "Too young to die" of "Heath Ledger: Favorite of the Gods", the actor's father, Kim Ledger, talks about the lost son and flips through the personal diary that Heath was keeping as he tried to discover the Joker character. . Then locked in a room and dive to the marrow of the role.

"He was basically locked in a hotel room for weeks. He was building his upcoming character, a classic Heath. He always did that. He liked to dive deep into his characters, but this time he went one step further. "He sank into his character at every level," comments his father.

The actor's words were confirmed by the actor in 2007 in an interview with Esquire magazine.

"I was locked in a hotel room in London for a month, I was making a diary, I was experimenting with my voice. It was important to find an iconic voice and an equally iconic laugh. Eventually I ended up approaching the world of a psychopath with little if any awareness of what he was doing. He is just a sociopath, a cold clown who kills en masse. "

In the diary, the cover of which reads "The Joker", there are detailed notes by Heath Ledger about the character of the Joker, his inspiration from the character of Malcolm McDowell in Kurdish Orange, his ideas in sketches, photos from the rehearsals he made for the very characteristic make-up of the Joker and for the clothes of the hero.

Shortly before the end of filming at the back of the page, Heath Ledger writes "Goodbye", as if he had seen his death that would come shortly after. "It's so hard to read, it hurts so much," his father wrote.

Ledger's attempt to enter the Joker world seems to have had a significant effect on his psychosynthesis, something his father had admitted in the documentary. He began to suffer from insomnia and took Ambien (which contained the hypnotic substance zolpidem). In fact, he once told the New York Times: "I slept an average of two hours every night. I could not stop thinking. My body was exhausted, but my mind kept going. "

In order to get into the skin of the role, he also wanted to experience the scenes of violence contained in the film. So he encouraged Christian Bale, who was playing him, to hit him as hard as he could. As much as he tried to convince him that the scene would be just as plausible if they pretended to hit each other, Heath Ledger did not back down. Christian Bale told the Hollywood Reporter: "I was pressured to hit him. He was slapping himself, injuring himself with pieces from the sets. His dedication was complete. "

His obsession with the Joker was great. When police entered his house and found him dead, they found him in front of a mausoleum for the famous evil. There were Batman comics everywhere in the house, small and large statues of clowns, recordings of the actor projecting his voice for the role.

The search for the Joker was extensive, the material perfectly stacked in a neatly arranged house. "He was a perfectionist who clearly had a great respect for character. All these things were very neat. He took great care of them, "the article reads.

"I'm a married traveler, a wanderer. Many people think of success, ambition, hot dollars; my own success is to stand under it all. "And at the end of the wedding day, this is the only thing you will carry with you when you die," he said, according to Entertainment Weekly. And it seems that he succeeded.