Even before The Dark Knight hit theaters last summer, the Oscar buzz surrounding Heath Ledger’s take on the  maniacal Joker was deafening. Fast forwarding to 2009, Ledger has not only received his Academy Award nomination, but has dominated the Best Supporting Actor category as a whole. The actor has already posthumously won the Golden Globe and SAG award for his performance, and the Oscar is in arm’s reach. Ledger is the favorite to win the Best Supporting Actor Oscar at this year’s ceremony, but a big mystery still remains. If  he wins, who will accept the award on his behalf?

The Dark Knight’s director Christopher Nolan spoke with EW after Saturday’s DGA awards, and he stated that Heath Ledger’s family would accept the award in his absence.

Nolan did not elaborate on which members of Ledger’s family would accept should Ledger win, but previous family statements have been made by Ledger’s father, Kim, mother, Sally, and older sister Kate, and it’s possible all three would step to the front of the Kodak on Oscar night.

If this stands true, I think his family accepting the award would be the most logical thing to do. At first I thought it would be a good idea for the entire cast of TDK to do it as an homage to their co-star, but family is more fitting. Early on rumors swirled that Michelle Williams would be a likely candidate, which a lot of people thought would be in bad taste. Granted she is the mother of his daughter, but she is not his widow. There hasn’t been an official statement released by the Ledger family or Warner Brothers, so nothings set in stone.

The only person to ever win a posthumous Oscar was Peter Finch in 1977, for his role in Network. His award was received by his wife and the film’s screenwriter.

If Ledger wins the Oscar, who do you think should accept the award on his behalf?