Before Heath Ledger, how many actors were offered the role of Joker in The Dark Knight?

From Jack Nicholson setting out to scare kids to Cesar Romero's gleeful trickster, Joker is a role that can make or break your career.

Actually, if at you just go down the list, updated with an Oscar-winning performance from Joaquin Phoenix, playing Joker is generally pretty good for your career (Jared Leto is another issue for another day). That's because the casting has always seemed so perfect.

Nobody was sure what Heath Ledger would bring to the role, and not everyone totally loved it (the aforementioned Nicholson), but most agree that it's one of the most iconic portrayals of a comic book villain in movie history.

It's hard to imagine 2008's The Dark Knight without Ledger — but was someone else offered the role first?

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