Ignore Those Rumors: Ledger <i>Won't</i> Appear In <i>Dark Knight Rises</i>

Director Christopher Nolan and his wife/producing partner Emma Thomas have shot down rumors that Heath Ledger's Joker will appear in The Dark Knight Rises through a combination of old footage and CGI.

“I heard the rumor,” Thomas told Heat Vision. “We’re not doing that.”

Nolan said he feels the late actor's performance should be confined to The Dark Knight. The 28-year-old Ledger died of an accidental drug overdose in January 2008 during the editing of the film, and received a posthumous Academy Award for his portrayal of Batman's arch-nemesis.

Although rumors emerged as far back as 2008 that Nolan had saved some of Ledger's deleted scenes for possible later use, this most recent round of speculation appears to have originated Tuesday on the entertainment websites Stuff.co.nz and Showbiz Spy. "The idea is to use these fragments of cut scenes and use CGI to have The Joker appear one last time," Stuff quotes an unnamed source as saying. "Chris wants some continuity between movies and for the franchise to pay tribute to Heath and his portrayal of the Joker."

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