Jennifer Coombes looks at costume sketches and continuity polaroids of Heath Ledger’s portrayal of Ned Kelly, as featured in the exhibition Heath Ledger: A Life in Pictures at the NFSA.
Heath Ledger: A Life in Pictures offers an intimate portrayal of his life and work as an actor. Curator Allison Holland also sets out to show in the exhibition the immersive and collaborative nature of filmmaking.
One of the films featured is Gregor Jordan’s Ned Kelly (2003). Based on Robert Drewe’s novel Our Sunshine, it imagines Ned Kelly reflecting on his dramatic short life the night before his fateful battle with the police while holed up with his gang at Glenrowan.
For the exhibition Holland located significant costumes, armour and props from the film in private and public collections. The NFSA had also acquired a range of on-set materials from the film including costumes.