Australians in Film Heath Ledger Scholarship 2012 applications open

30 January, 2012 by IF

Press release from Susie Dobson

Australians in Film (AiF), today announced that applications are now open for the prestigious fourth annual AiF HEATH LEDGER SCHOLARSHIP (HLS). Renowned Hollywood director Catherine Hardwicke (Twilight, Lords of Dogtown and Thirteen) has joined the 2012 judging panel, and a 10-day trip around California has been added to the winner’s prize package. The Scholarship is open to any emerging Australian actor who wants to further their career and training in the US.


Applications are open now and will be available until March 15th, 2012 at winning recipient will be announced at the AiF’s annual Breakthrough Awards in Los Angeles later this year.

The recipient of the primary scholarship will receive USD$10,000 in cash, a round-trip ticket to Los Angeles flying Australians in Film’s exclusive airline partner Virgin Australia, a one-year Scholarship to Stella Adler Acting School in LA, a ten-day trip for two around California from Visit California, and a Showcast & Breakdown Services VIP casting package. Two runners up will each receive a round-trip ticket to Los Angeles courtesy of Virgin Australia plus a Showcast VIP casting package. Ten finalists, who will be announced in April 2012, will each receive a Quickflix annual subscription.

Previous recipients of the Scholarship have included Bella Heathcote, who is set to appear in the upcoming Tim Burton film Dark Shadows starring Johnny Depp and Andrew Dominik’s Cogan’s Trade with Brad Pitt; Ryan Corr, (upcoming film, Not Suitable for Children with Ryan Kwanten, Packed to the Rafters and Tangles) and Oliver Ackland (The Slap, Cloudstreet, Wasted on the Young.)

Bella Heatcote says of her 2010 Scholarship "Winning the scholarship was the best possible way to start my career in LA. It gave me the incentive to come to LA, a start-up fund to sustain me, and a foot in-the-door in regards to meetings with industry professionals. I'd encourage any actor out there to apply."

The Heath Ledger Scholarship is named in honor of Ledger who was an Ambassador for AiF before his untimely death in January 2008 and has the support of the Ledger family and friends.

Past judges have included actors Jude Law, Rachel Griffiths, Jason Isaacs and Frances O’Connor, film director Gregor Jordan, talent agent Steve Alexander, and casting agents Ann Faye, John Papsidera, and April Webster.

Benefactors include Nicole Kidman, Naomi Watts, Hugh Jackman, Deborra-Lee Furness, Michelle Williams, Phil Noyce, Baz Luhrmann and Catherine Martin.

Applications and complete scholarship guidelines are available on To contribute financially, please contact