Heath Ledger’s father, Kim, has defended his late son’s Academy Award-winning portrayal of The Joker in ‘The Dark Knight,’ in the wake of the tragic shooting at the Century 16 Cinemas in Aurora, Colorado, Comic Book Movie is reporting. Suspected shooter James Holmes allegedly modeled himself as the villain, even dying his hair and beard red, before he began firing on the crowd at the midnight showing on Thursday of ‘The Dark Knight Rises.’

After news of the shooting broke, some people began placing some of the blame on The Joker and even Ledger himself. In response, Kim called the situation terrible and diabolical. “I am appalled. The guy…has obviously lost it,” he said.

Kim added that he thinks America should restrict “the availability of ammunition or revisiting their gun laws-that’s what they should be doing.” He added that “we can’t blame Heath or the character. It’s fictitious. I don’t know what this does to the character. But that’s the least of my worries.”

Kim’s statement comes as Warner Bros., the studio that released ‘The Dark Knight Rises,’ and the rest of Hollywood declined to release official box office numbers for the weekend, out of respect for the victims and their families. But Christopher Nolan’s second Batman sequel reportedly drew in a record-setting $160 million for the weekend. It became the biggest three-day opening ever for a 2D release, topping the $158 million its predecessor in the series earned in 2008. ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ also became the third overall opening ever, after ‘Marvel’s The Avengers’ and ‘Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows-Part 2.’

Written by: Karen Benardello

Heath Ledger's Father Kim Defends The Joker

By Karen Benardello

As a graduate of LIU Post with a B.F.A in Journalism, Print and Electronic, Karen Benardello serves as ShockYa's Senior Movies & Television Editor. Her duties include interviewing filmmakers and musicians, and scribing movie, television and music reviews and news articles. As a New York City-area based journalist, she's a member of the guilds, New York Film Critics Online and the Women Film Critics Circle.

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