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Dark Knight Alum David Dastmalchian Shares Sweet Memories Of Working With Heath Ledger

The Dark Knight is, without question, one of the most important comic book movies ever made. It is generally regarded as the best Batman movie made to date, and that’s impressive considering no comic book hero has quite the big screen history. However, the movie took on absolutely mythic proportions due to it being released after the death of Heath Ledger, and David Dastmalchian, who worked alongside Ledger in the movie, still thinks about what a special experience that was.

Before David Dastmalchian was appearing in movies from Ant-Man to The Suicide Squad to Dune, he appeared as one of the Joker’s thug’s in The Dark Knight. It was one of Dastmalchian’s first big screen roles, and speaking with Looper, the actor talked about what a great actor, and what a great person, Heath Ledger was, saying...

Every day. I think about that project every day. There's not a day that goes by that I don't think about the impact that film, and that experience, had on my life. I got to learn so much in such a short amount of time. I was only around Heath Ledger for just a couple of days, but I learned and was so inspired by the way he existed on set as an artist, as a person, his kindness, his gentleness of spirit, the way that he was invisible until it was time for him to be seen — and when he was seen, he made the most of every moment he had as an actor.

Heath Ledger’s performance as the Joker in The Dark Knight is one of the all-time greats. It won him an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. Of course, the great tragedy was that it was awarded posthumously, as Ledger died following the completion of his work on The Dark Knight

And it shows just how good Heath Ledger’s performance truly was as The Joker. We’ve learned some since his death regarding how involved his process was. It’s almost shocking to hear David Dastmalchian talk about how kind and gentle the actor was, considering that’s about as far from the character he played as you could possibly get. 

Heath Ledger was certainly a great talent that fans lost far too young. We can only imagine what sorts of performances he would have given had he been with us longer. There’s a good chance he would have added to that Oscar. 

For his part, David Dastmalchian has become a great actor in his own right, and with a number of roles in high profile films, we will certainly continue to see him impressing us with his skills as well. The experience that Dastmalchian had making The Dark Knight has certainly left its mark. 

Dirk Libbey

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian. Armchair Imagineer. Epcot Stan. Future Club 33 Member.