Director Christopher Nolan accepted the award on Ledger’s behalf.
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“All of us who worked with Heath accept this award with an awful mixture of sadness but incredible pride,” Nolan said. “After Heath passed on, you saw a hole ripped in the future of cinema. But with the extraordinary response to his work that we’ve seen all over the world, I, for one, start to look a bit less at that gap in the future and a little bit more at the incredible place in the history of cinema he built for himself with his talent and his dedication and his artistry.”
“For any of us lucky enough to work with him, for any of us lucky enough to enjoy his performances, he will be eternally missed but he will never be forgotten,” the director continued.
Prior to Nolan’s acceptance speech, a brief scene of Ledger as The Joker was shown.
The award marks the first Golden Globe award in Ledger’s career.
In a statement to People, Heath’s father expressed his delight for his son’s win.
“We are overjoyed for him,” Kim Ledger said. “It’s wonderful.”
Heath’s father cited personal reasons for not being able to make the trip from his home in Perth, Australia, to the Golden Globes ceremony in Hollywood.
Meanwhile, Ledger’s “Dark Knight” co-star, Aaron Eckhart, echoed Nolan’s sentiments prior to the show during a red carpet interview with Ryan Seacrest.
“I get the chills when I talk about him. I’m very proud of him, I’ve proud to have known him and been in the movie with him,” Eckhart said.
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