It’s been over nine years since Heath Ledger was found dead in his apartment in Manhattan.
The Australian actor died of a cardiac arrest; once caused by the consumption of too much alcohol, in combination with prescription drugs and sleeping pills. He was just 28.
It’s still unclear as to why the young actor ended up in such a tragic downward spiral, but one thing that we know for certain is that he loved his daughter, Matilda, more than anything.
“Matilda is adorable, and beautifully observant and wise. Michelle and I love her so much. Becoming a father exceeds all my expectations. It’s the most remarkable experience I’ve ever had — it’s marvellous,” Ledger said in 2005.
In fact, the actor’s close friend and voice coach, Gerry Grennell, revealed to People Magazine that he believed Ledger always thought about his little girl; even during the last few weeks of his life.
“He missed his girl, he missed his family, his missed his little girl – he desperately wanted to see her and hold her and play with her,” Grennell said.
Matilda Rose Ledger was born on the 28 October 2005, around a year after her father and mother, actress Michelle Williams, started dating.
The pair had met each other during the production of Brokeback Mountain in the summer of 2004.
Ledger fell head-over-heels in love with Williams, one year his junior, after the “Dawson’s Creek” star played his wife in the film.
It wasn’t long before the pair were starting to plan their future together.
“We talked about having children very early. I have always known that I wanted to become a young father,” Ledger said in an interview, according to Australian site News.
But in 2007, Ledger and Williams decided to end their three-year relationship, opting to mutually go their separate ways.
The former couple remained close friends right up until Ledger’s untimely and tragic death.
At the time the actor passed away his daughter Matilda was just two-years-old, so Williams ensured she was kept out of the limelight when it came to the press.
The actress herself was in Trollhättan, Sweden, recording for Luke Moodysson’s film Mammut, when she learned about Ledger’s passing: “Please respect our need to grieve privately,” Williams said, at the time. “My heart is broken. I am the mother of the most tender-hearted, high-spirited, beautiful little girl who is the spitting image of her father. All that I can cling to is his presence inside her that reveals itself every day. His family and I watch Matilda as she whispers to trees, hugs animals, and takes steps two at a time, and we know that he is with us still. She will be brought up in the best memories of him.”
In November 2016, Williams appeared in a rare interview, during which she discussed raising Matilda without her father.
“In all honesty, for pretty much everything else, I feel like I’m a believer in not fighting circumstances, accepting where you are and where you’ve been,” Williams said.
She continued: “In pretty much all senses but one, I would be able to go totally down that line of thinking were it not for Matilda not having her dad. You know, that’s just something that doesn’t… I mean, it just won’t ever be right.”
Matilda’s family tried to keep her away from the spotlight during her formative years. Now, however, pictures of the girl have been surfacing online.
Today, Matilda is a beautiful 12-year-old girl who apparently has her father’s “energy”. Recently, pictures emerged of her on a trip with her mother; images that show her to bear a striking resemblance to her late father.
“She has a lot of energy,” says Kim Ledger, Heath’s own father.
“Heath never slept from when he was two, and Matilda is the same. She is this little ball of energy and she radiates this little aura.”
This week, the family confirmed that Matilda will inherit the entirety of Heath’s fortune.
The actor’s wealth is estimated to sit at around some $20 million. In his will, he left the money to his parents and his three sisters.
However, that will was scribed back in 2003 – two years before Matilda Rose was even born. Heath’s father, Kim, has said that the family does not intend to take the money for themselves.
Every penny of Ledger’s fortune will go to his daughter, and will be held until she is of age.
Can you see the similarities between Matilda and Heath? Let us know in the comments box!
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