HLS Terms and Conditions


The 2024 Australians in Film Heath Ledger Scholarship will be awarded to an early career actor with a demonstrated achievement and dedication to their craft. Applicants should: 

  • show evidence of initiative and exceptional talent with ability to convert ambitions to reality; 
  • demonstrate their commitment to excellence, including dedication to craft; 
  • demonstrate passion for their work with potential to be outstanding in an international context; and 
  • be ready to undertake activities such as (but not limited to) private and group study, mentoring and short -term relocation to Los Angeles. 

The scholarship is awarded to an actor who is ready to transition to an international career and train in Los Angeles. 

Australians in Film encourages actors from under-represented members of the Australian screen sector to apply.  

Timeframe of the Heath Ledger Scholarship

Applications open 4:00 PM Monday, July 1, 2024 (PDT) [which is 9:00 AM Tuesday, July 2, 2024 (AEDT)]
Applications close 4:00 PM Wednesday, July 31, 2024 (PDT) [ which is 9:00 AM Thursday, August 1, 2024 (AEDT).
Five finalists will be chosen, and the successful finalists will be notified in late September 2024 by the Australians in Film office in Los Angeles. Subject to the terms, Australians in Film will provide the finalists in Australia with flights to Los Angeles at the end of October for the announcement of the winning Scholarship Recipient.
The Scholarship Recipient will be announced in late October, 2024 in Los Angeles, at a location and exact date to be announced.

Eligibility for the Heath Ledger Scholarship

  • Applicant must be an Australian citizen, living in Australia or overseas. 
  • Applicants must be 18 years of age or over at the time of application. 
  • Applicants must have a current Australian passport and take responsibility for obtaining any U.S. Visas that may be required. 

PLEASE NOTE: The Scholarship is not available to any Australian actor who has played (or at the time of application has been cast in) a significant role in a US feature film or an ongoing or recurring role in a US network, cable or streaming TV series.  

Judging of the Heath Ledger Scholarship 

A panel of judges from the Australian & U.S. film & television community including one or more leading Casting Directors (the First Round Selection Committee) will be appointed to make the selection of the five finalists from all applications successfully submitted by the closing date. 

After selection (and notification), the five finalists will be given one week to record an additional audition to supplement their original submission. 

One Scholarship Recipient will be selected from the five finalists by leading industry creatives and talent (the Final Round Selection Committee).  

Funding of the Heath Ledger Scholarship 

Australians in Film Foundation, a 501(c)(3) U.S. charitable organization, underwrites the HLS Scholarship. References to Australians in Film or AiF include Australians in Film Foundation. 

Application Requirements of the Heath Ledger Scholarship

Application Fee: 

USD $60 per application to apply, which includes a one-year Access membership to Australians in Film. Current financial AiF members will receive an additional complimentary one-year Access membership. You must be signed-in to your application to submit this payment. No refunds of any kind are permitted, including for withdrawn, cancelled, disqualified or unsuccessful applications.  

(A fee waiver may be available to Applicants who demonstrate financial hardship. Please email hls@australiansinfilm.org for more information). 

Two (2) Written References: 

Applicants are required to obtain two different references from different individuals, signed and on letterhead with contact details included. Applicants should include at least one reference from a recognized authority involved in the arts or entertainment industries. Applications submitted without the two supporting references will not be accepted. 

 A recognized authority in the arts or entertainment industry includes your acting/drama teachers/coaches, heads of an acting academy, directors of films, television or stage performances you have been involved in, casting directors, accomplished cast members of a production you were directly involved in, or any persons with expertise in the arts and entertainment industry. References should be from people who can directly attest to your work ethic, how you work with others, your skills, their belief in your ability and your personality and character. 

Personal Statement: 

Applicants are required to write a personal statement, discussing why they deserve the Scholarship and outlining what they hope to achieve during the 12-month period following their receipt of the Scholarship. 

Legacy Statement: 

The 2024 Heath Ledger Scholarship Recipient should mirror Heath's generous nature and his dedication to craft.​ Applicants should discuss in their Legacy Statement how they would commit to the spirit of giving back. 

Head Shot: 

Applicant is required to submit an industry standard headshot, i.e., it must be in color, show your whole face, and must look like you. 

Showreel video: 

Please provide a video that best showcases your talent to support your application. This video should be no longer than two minutes long. This could be a reel, a scene, a monologue or any creative piece that you feel conveys your best talents. All judges are instructed not to view any footage over 2:00 minutes. 


2024 Australians in Film Heath Ledger Scholarship Terms and Conditions:

  1. Citizenship/ Residents. Heath Ledger Scholarship is restricted to Australian citizens only. 
  2. Australian Citizens Overseas. Applicants who are Australian citizens living overseas are eligible to be considered for the Scholarship. 
  3. Age. Awards are granted to Applicants who are 18 years of age or over at the time of applying. 
  4. Interviews. Applicants must be available to attend a zoom/online interview if required. 
  5. Amount of Award. The amount of cash money attached to the Heath Ledger Scholarship is US$10,000 to be paid to the Recipient of the Scholarship as follows: the first payment of US$2,500 shall be paid upon arrival in Los Angeles to commence the training/mentorship period in Los Angeles, and the balance of $7,500 shall be paid in the U.S in equal installments over the nine months after the Recipient arrives in Los Angeles for the training/ mentoring period . The cash money award will be paid after receiving the reports described below from the Recipient. 
  6. Scholarship Reports. If selected as the Recipient, Applicants agree to provide quarterly reports outlining objectives met and outcomes over the designated 12-month period after the award of the Scholarship to the Recipient. 
  7. Support from Other Sources. The First Round and Final Round Selection Committees will take account of any other existing sources of support for particular Applicants and will normally avoid duplicating the activities of other bodies. Only in special circumstances may the Scholarship be awarded concurrently with another award to the same Applicant. 
  8. Contract. The award of a Heath Ledger Scholarship is subject to the Recipient agreeing to be bound by the conditions laid out in a contract document signed between AiF and the Recipient. A Scholarship cannot commence until the Board of Australians in Film receives an executed copy of the contract document from the Recipient. 
  9. Air Travel. All air travel will be by economy class air. Travel will begin and terminate at the major airport nearest to the Recipient’s home address in Australia. The route may be varied to reduce costs.  
  10. Visas. Recipient is responsible for obtaining any relevant visas in order to fulfill travel requirements. All Applicants may not have any convictions or pending charges for a felony, domestic violence, or drug-related offense. If the selected Recipient does not have the required visa to live and work in the United States, Recipient agrees to cooperate with AiF and AiF’s designated U.S. immigration law firm (Raynor and Associates) in seeking an O-1 visa. This includes supplying the following documentation: evidence of awards or nominations, press and publicity (newspaper/magazine articles), past contracts showing high salary, and letters of recommendation from prominent people in the entertainment industry.
  11. Availability to Recipient of Benefits. Benefits are provided by various sponsors and donors and are subject to restrictions or limitations as to value, amount, timing and valuation of services as such sponsors and donors impose in their sole discretion. The Recipient of the Scholarship must accept and redeem all prizes within twelve (12) months of the date of the official announcement of the winner of the Scholarship and all travel and activities are intended to be completed within such 12 months. If the Recipient is unable or unwilling to timely accept or otherwise redeem any prize on the terms it is awarded for any reason (including for events outside control of the Recipient or of Australians in Film) such prize shall be forfeited, and no cash or substitutes will be provided in whole or in part. Prizes are not transferable. 
  12. Income Tax. The liability of a Recipient for Income Tax is a matter for decision by the Commissioner of Taxation, or the IRS (whichever is applicable) and Australians in Film has no responsibility or authority in the matter. However, an allowance or cash award paid to the Recipient is likely to be treated as assessable income. Australians in Film recommends that the Recipient keep receipts for all expenditure of their Scholarship funds and seek independent advice with respect to their eligibility for claiming tax deductions. 
  13. Application Form. The purpose of the application form is to enable the First Round and Final Round Selection Committees to assess the applicants in order to select the Finalists and the Recipient. All applications must be made on the Application Form provided on the on-line platform Submittable. 
  14. References. An Applicant is required to obtain two different references from different individuals. Applicants should include at least one reference from a recognized authority involved in the arts or entertainment industries. The references should be returned to the Applicant for submission with their application and contain a signature and contact details on letterhead. Applications submitted without the two supporting references will not be accepted. 
  15. Selection. Once submitted, all applications will be acknowledged. Selection of the Heath Ledger Scholarship Finalists and Recipients will be via the following timetable:
    (a) Application Start Date. Applications are called from 4:00 PM Monday, July 1, 2024 (PDT) [which is 9:00 AM Tuesday, July 2, 2024 (AEDT)]. (b) Application Closing Date. Applications close at 4:00 PM Wednesday July 31, 2024(PDT) [which is 9:00 AM Thursday, August 1, 2024 (AEDT)].  (c) Submission of Applications. Applications with supporting references must be submitted online by the Application Closing Date. No grace periods will be extended. Applications lodged or received after that date will not be considered. Applications must be completed via Australians in Film’s third-party Scholarship provider website, Submittable. Faxed or mailed applications will not be accepted. 

    (d) Selection. The selection of Heath Ledger Scholarship finalists and Recipient and the procedure undertaken are at the absolute discretion of the First Round and Final Round Selection Committee(s) and Australians in Film. 

    (e) Finalists. The five successful Finalists will be officially announced on social media on or around the week of September 23, 2024. 

    (f) Recipient. The Heath Ledger Scholarship Recipient will be officially announced in Los Angeles at a venue and time TBD in late October, 2024. 

    (g) Unsuccessful Applicants. Unsuccessful Applicants will be advised if they are not selected as a Finalist via email. 

  16. Materials. All materials submitted by Applicants for the Heath Ledger Scholarship become the property of Australians in Film. 
  17. Reapplying. The awarding of the Heath Ledger Scholarship is a competitive process with the merit of the proposal being the primary test. Unsuccessful Applicants are encouraged to re-apply in subsequent years. 
  18. Privacy Statement. Your privacy is respected by Australians in Film, and personal information will be handled in a sensitive manner and in accordance with the terms and conditions and privacy policies of Australians in Film and applicable laws. Information collected on the Application and References and from Applicants will be used for the purpose of selecting the Heath Ledger Scholarship Finalists and Recipient, and  administering the Heath Ledger Scholarship and will be provided to the First Round and Final Round Selection Committee, and Australians in Film staff and third party service providers to perform tasks on our behalf including to our third party application and payment processors. If you have privacy concerns or questions about the privacy policies of Australians in Film or would like to verify information held about you, please contact privacy@australiansinfilm.org   
  19. Media Release and Other Publicity. All Applicants agree that we may use their names, likenesses and biographies in connection with and to promote the Scholarship and the work of Australians in Film and in particular the Finalists and Recipient’s names, likenesses and biographies and the subject of the Scholarship will be provided to the any and all media as part of media and publicity releases. All Applicants agree that they own and/or control the copyright in all photographs, likenesses and videos that they submit to AiF in connection with the Scholarship and such materials may be freely used to promote the Scholarship and may be provided to and used by any and all media for such purposes. The Applicants agree that these details and materials may be used to promote the Scholarship including without limitation by publication on the Australians in Film Website and on its social media platforms and on and by any and all other media without the need for any third-party permissions or payments. 
  20. Amendments. Once submitted, the only amendments or alterations allowed by an Applicant is that they may access and update the personal information that Australians in Film holds at any time. Ready to take the next step?  


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