Heath Ledger wins Golden Globe

HFPA honors the late actor for 'Dark Knight'

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The award for best supporting actor went to the late Heath Ledger on Sunday at the 66th annual Golden Globe Awards.

The Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. celebrated Ledger posthumously for his role as the psychotic Joker in "The Dark Knight."

The award came almost a year after Ledger's death from an accidental overdose Jan. 22 in New York.

The film's director, Christopher Nolan, accepted the award on behalf of Ledger, while those in the ballroom stood and applauded. "All of us who worked with Heath on 'The Dark Night' accept this with an awful mixture of sadness, but incredible pride." While Nolan said Ledger's passing represented "a hole ripped in the history of cinema," he also pointed to "the incredible place in the history of cinema that he built for himself." Nolan ended his remarks by saying, "He will be eternally missed, but he will never be forgotten."

Ledger has already picked up several other laurels for his work in the film: He has been named best supporting actor of 2008 by the Los Angeles Film Critics Assn., the Boston Society of Film Critics, the Chicago Film Critics Assn., the Southeastern Film Critics Assn., the Toronto Film Critics Assn. and the Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Assn.

His Globe win arose from his second nomination from the HFPA. The group also nominated him for best performance by an actor in a motion picture drama in 2006 for his performance in "Brokeback Mountain."