[VIDEO] Was Heath Ledger's Version Of The Joker Inspired By Tom Waits?
Posted by Joseph Lee on 07.31.2012
That's the new rumor...
NME reports that there are now rumors that Heath Ledger's portrayal of The Joker in The Dark Knight was inspired by Tom Waits.
Fans found a 1979 TV interview with Waits on Youtube, in which his voice and mannerisms are very similar to Ledger's version of The Joker. You can watch the video and decide for yourself below.
Ledger died in January 2008 of an accidental prescription drug overdose, just a few months after shooting the film. He received a posthumous Academy Award for the role, which he described as a "psychopathic, mass-murdering, schizophrenic clown with zero empathy".
Fans were curious about the similarity between the footage and The Joker, especially since Waits and Ledger both had roles in Terry Gilliam's 2009 movie The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus (Ledger's final film role). It's unknown if the two ever met or if Ledger ever watched any video of Waits.
Even if it's true, Ledger wouldn't be the first actor to use a rock star as inspiration. Johnny Depp based Jack Sparrow in the Pirates of the Caribbean films on Keith Richards, who would later play Sparrow's father in two of the sequels.