Sat July 21, 2012 6:03pm
THE Colorado massacre has again stirred up talk that the Batman film franchise is cursed.
Before the horrific cinema shooting spree that left 12 dead and 59 injured, one of the greatest tragedies associated with the film was the death of Heath Ledger, who played the Joker in The Dark Knight, The Daily Mail reports.
The Australian actor died in January 2008 at the age of 28 from an accidental overdose of prescription drugs, six months before the film's release.
Ledger's chilling portrayal of Batman's flame-haired arch nemesis, The Joker, later earned him a posthumous Academy Award.
The filming of The Dark Knight was marred by another tragedy - the death of New Zealander Conway Wickliffe.
The special effects technician was on a camera truck filming a stunt when it crashed into a tree in October 2007.
On the set of the recent instalment, The Dark Knight Rises, a stunt double for Anne Hathaway, who plays Catwoman, reportedly crashed into expensive camera equipment during filming in Pittsburgh.
The Batman "curse'' also touched The Dark Knight's other stars, Hollywood favourite Morgan Freeman and Christian Bale.
Freeman, who played Lucius Fox in the film, was seriously injured in a car accident in Mississippi in August 2008.
The crash left both Freeman and his passenger Demaris Meyer badly injured after the car flipped several times and landed in a ditch.
In the days after the accident, Freeman and his wife of 24 years announced they were divorcing
His passenger, who was widely reported to have been his mistress, denied she was romantically linked to him and sued the actor for negligence.
Christian Bale, the star of the franchise, also failed to escape the trilogy's run of bad luck.
The famously volatile actor, who plays Batman, hit the headlines in July 2008 when he was arrested for allegedly assaulting his mother and sister at the Dorchester Hotel shortly before the London's premiere.