Heath Ledger found dead in New York

Tue Jan 22, 2008 6:51pm EST
 
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By Christine Kearney

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Actor Heath Ledger was found dead in his Manhattan apartment on Tuesday, possibly of a drug overdose, New York City police said.

The Australian-born Ledger, 28, who was nominated for an Oscar two years ago for "Brokeback Mountain," was found dead by a housekeeper at his apartment in the trendy SoHo neighborhood, police spokesman Paul Browne said.

"We are investigating the possibility of an overdose," Browne said.

The housekeeper found Ledger at 3:26 p.m. (2026 GMT), naked and unresponsive, and tried to wake him for his appointment to have a massage, Browne said.

"There were pills within the vicinity of the bed," Browne said, adding that he believed they were sleeping pills.

No cause of death was determined.

Ledger was nominated for an Academy Award as best lead actor for his role as a gay cowboy in 2005's "Brokeback Mountain," but the Oscar went to Philip Seymour Hoffman for his role as Truman Capote. However, Ledger did win a New York Film Critics Circle award for the role.

The handsome star last year broke up with his longtime companion, actress Michelle Williams, who played his wife in "Brokeback" and was the real-life mother of the actor's 2-year-old daughter, Matilda.   Continued...

 
<p>Actor Heath Ledger nominated for best actor for "Brokeback Mountain" arrives at the 78th annual Academy Awards at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood, California in this March 5, 2006 file photo. Ledger was found dead in his Manhattan apartment on Tuesday, possibly of a drug overdose, New York City police said. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson</p>