Heath Ledger’s shocking death has sparked a flood of tributes.
The 28-year-old actor’s naked body, which was surrounded by pills, was discovered by his housekeeper yesterday afternoon (22.01.08). It is believed he died of an accidental drugs overdose, after taking prescription medication.
Heath’s devastated father, Kim, has paid tribute to his “dearly loved son”. Speaking in the actor’s hometown of Perth, western Australia, Kim said: “Heath was down to earth, generous, kind hearted, life-loving, unselfish individual.
“He has touched so many people on so many different levels during his short life that few had the pleasure of truly knowing him.”
Many of Heath’s fellow Australian stars have also paid tribute to him. Nicole Kidman, whose best friend Naomi Watts used to date Heath, said: “What a tragedy. My heart goes out to his family.”
Mel Gibson, who discovered Heath when he was 19 and starred with him in The Patriot, said: “I feel very sad. He was really taking off as a fine actor.”
Heath leaves behind a two-year-old daughter Matilda, from his relationship with ex-fiancée Michelle Williams. Heath and Michelle split last September and friends claim the I’m Not There star never really got over the break-up.
One pal said: “He really wanted it to work but Michelle ended it and Heath was devastated. He blamed himself for Matilda not having her dad around all the time and he never seemed himself after that. His mind was always somewhere else and his depression wasn’t improving at all.”
It has been claimed Heath used recreational drugs, including cocaine and heroin.
Heath is also believed to have been suffering from insomnia caused by his role in the upcoming Batman film The Dark Knight. Last November, in Heath’s last interview before his death, he said: “Last week I probably slept an average of two hours a night. I couldn’t stop thinking. My body was exhausted, and my mind was still going.”
An autopsy is planned for later today (23.01.08).