It's one of those small facts that sends your mind wandering into the abyss, asking "what if" and questioning how differently things could have turned out if only a certain decision had been made; in the early '00s, Heath Ledger was the first choice to play #SpiderMan — but he turned the role down.
The revelation was dropped by his long-term agent Steve Alexander back in 2009, who stated that it was predominately down to Heath's awareness that, for some, playing the web-weaving superhero is a childhood dream, and to take the role would be to deprive someone of that:
"Sony asked me to come over and read the script for Spider-Man. It was going to be a really cool tent pole movie...But as soon as I said Spider-Man Heath said, 'It's not for me. I would be taking someone else's dream away."
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Such a selfless act, and one that really illustrates the kind of diamond human Heath Ledger was. Not many actors would sacrifice the insane level of notoriety such a role would bring, but it was never fame that he searched for, more a testing his own talent. Of course, the part went to Tobey Maguire, which shot him into the worldwide circuit in 2002, while Heath stuck to the roles that expanded his repertoire — Lords of Dogtown, Ned Kelly, Monster's Ball — until scoring the infamous comic book role that would, devastatingly, play a large part in his demise: The Joker.
It's common knowledge now of how Heath tragically passed, so we shan't reopen those wounds again — if anything, it's just too depressing. We will, however, share with you this awesome clip from The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, which shows #HeathLedger in his last ever role being mocked by the second Spider-Man, Andrew Garfield!
Do you think Heath Ledger would have made a great Spider-Man?