July 19, 2008

Film Festival to Honor Ledger Posthumously

A movie festival in Brisbane, Australia, will honor actor Heath Ledger, who died of an accidental drug overdose this year, officials say.

Rod Welford, the arts minister for the Australian state of Queensland, said the Brisbane International Film Festival will take time next month to recognize Ledger's contributions to his native land's movie industry, The Daily Telegraph reported Saturday.

Over the years, there have been many others who have drawn focus to the Australian film industry either through their own personal achievements in their field or their consistent and staunch support for Australian film-making, Welford said.

Heath Ledger did both, and his passing highlighted how loved and revered he was -- not just by fans, but by the Australian film-making community.

The British newspaper said the honorary awards ceremony for the late 28-year-old actor will mark the first time in the festival's 16-year history an individual has been honored posthumously.