Leonardo DiCaprio does not want to talk about the Titanic. The actor, who played the main role in the most expensive film of all time, categorically refuses to talk about the shootings, relations with the director, problems with the role. It is known that the director of “Titanic” James Cameron forced the actors to do 20-25 doubles even in passing episodes, and he re-shot important scenes for the plot, almost 100 times, achieving some special, only guided nuances. You must admit, it’s one thing to hug a beautiful girl 25 times, and quite another to dive 25 times in cold water to get her out of there. Perhaps Leonardo DiCaprio does not want to talk about the film, so as not to say harsh words about his colleagues. But his colleagues talk a lot about him – and only complementary.
“I used to see Leo in only one movie -“ What Gilbert Grape Eats? ”James Cameron says. – When we started work on the Titanic, Leo was still not the most fashionable actor of the season, the premiere of Romeo and Juliet was just getting ready. Leo was just a charismatic guy who can enter the room and instantly win over everyone who is in it. This is exactly what was needed for the performer of the role of Jack. But I wanted to check how well Leo can play dramatic scenes, so I asked him to take a test. He grimaced, but agreed.
However, he came to the test with a defiant look – he sat in my office, smoking a cigarette, as if he didn’t give a damn about what would happen now. It bothered me a little, I thought I was mistaken in it. And then he got up and immediately played the scene so that my goosebumps ran! You can’t imagine what I experienced at that moment. As if I alone see a flying saucer, and everyone else thinks I’m drunk. Well, after that I ran to the producers screaming that I had found my hero. ” It was not easy for Cameron to prove this, since Leonardo DiCaprio forbade taking his sample. The producers were overcome with doubts: how can I take a little-known artist in a big-budget film? But the premiere of “Romeo and Juliet” arrived and the issue was resolved in favor of Cameron.
However, at this moment a new obstacle arose: DiCaprio refused to sign the contract. The reason was not at all that he was not satisfied with the fee or any other conditions. He just decided that he did not want to play the role of a romantic hero in a big expensive film – he liked small independent projects on which he had more control over the material. Cameron invited him to meet. DiCaprio reluctantly agreed and at the meeting told the director that in the script the main character looks too positive and innocent.
Cameron began to tell him that at the level of symbolism, the concept of the film is precisely reduced to the death of innocence, personified by the heroes in love, in the face of impending catastrophes of the twentieth century. But DiCaprio had little interest in the conceptual layout of the director, he insisted on a greater grotesque role. Cameron categorically told him that he would not make Jack either a cocainist or a hunchback. DiCaprio was ready to give a final refusal when Cameron went all-in, spurring his ambition on the statement that playing such a spoiled guy like DiCaprio would be the hardest. Is he afraid of difficulties? The next day, DiCaprio signed a contract.
In this shortly after this interview, the actor diplomatically named other reasons. He stated that he would play in the Titanic, because this is not a standard action movie, but a truly dramatic story. “I agreed to play a guy who travels in third grade, but falls in love with a girl riding first class,” he said. – For me, this is a tape about a young artist who is struggling with the class structure of his society. Actually, I’m not acting in blockbusters. ”
Perhaps, after the trials that fell to his share in the Titanic project, DiCaprio will never really be in action films again. But he went through the “baptism of fire” with honor, as many call Cameron’s work. It is not without reason that after the filming of the director’s previous film True Truth was completed, the crew made for themselves T-shirts with the inscription: “I won’t be scared of anything – I worked with James Cameron!” DiCaprio courageously endured all the difficulties of the six-month shooting period, without losing his sense of humor even in the most difficult minutes.
His partner Kate Winslet recalls that on one of the shooting days they had to make their way along the half-flooded bulkheads in front of the camera, which seemed to crash at any moment. “I thought: if these walls collapse, there will be nothing left of me at all,” Winslet says. – I turned to Leo and told him: “I want a baby!” He, without blinking an eye, answered: “Right now?”
DiCaprio and Winslet maintained a great relationship after the filming of “Titanic.” When the film premiered in London, Winslet got the flu just on the day of the celebration, and DiCaprio, who arrived from America, immediately rushed to the hospital after the press conference on duty to brighten her loneliness. He spent all evening near her bed, giving reporters a reason to gossip about his new hobby. However, in recent months the tabloid press has had many reasons for gossip. Leonardo DiCaprio still constantly appears in nightclubs in New York and Los Angeles in the company of his equally famous friends – Johnny Depp, Mark Wahlberg, Stephen Dorff, Christina Ricci, Juliette Lewis, Samantha Matis – in a word, all the golden youth of Hollywood .
But, in addition to the usual gossip about his stormy entertainments, in recent months DiCaprio has been harassed by a different kind of trouble. Two and a half years ago, DiCaprio starred for free in the film project of his friend, a novice director R.D. Robb – the low-budget film Don’s Goodies. Made in today’s fashionable style of “conversational cinema”, the film shows a group of young people gathering in an eatery called “Treats of the Don” and discussing their pressing problems – sometimes quite daring for the mass audience. DiCaprio played a certain Derek, a drug addict, a woman-hater and, in general, an “opportunist on the verge of swine”, as the screenwriter Dale Wheatley sobily put it.
At first it was supposed that this black-and-white film would be nothing more than a short experiment of young filmmakers, but as the screen fame of DiCaprio and his partner Toby Maguire grew, the producers wanted to capitalize on the project and in the summer of 1996 arranged a viewing on which the film looked quite “full-length” “- he walked for an hour and a half – and quite professionally in terms of staging and editing. And the participation in it of a youth idol automatically made him a potential arthouse hit.
However, DiCaprio soon stated that he was categorically against the release of the film for hire. The actor inadvertently told the press that he was “relaxing” on the set of the real drinking establishment, and that all the participants in the project were mostly delayed, not thinking that they would subsequently be shown on screen in this form. It was possible to understand his words in two ways: either DiCaprio openly hacked and played the fool in front of the camera, and now he is ashamed of a bad game, or he inadvertently showed his true nature in the frame and now does not want the fans to witness the swine sides of his character. Since no one has seen the film so far, the most incredible rumors have circulated about Don’s Goodies.
Producer Jerry Midors assures: DiCaprio was aware that they were going to make a full-length movie for rental in theaters, but, having acquired the status of a romantic movie star after roles in Romeo and Juliet and Titanic, he is now afraid to lose it. The situation is complicated by the fact that DiCaprio at one time agreed to withdraw for free, provided that he retains the right to approve the material. After the first viewing, he signed a document giving the producers “good” for the release of the film, but then changed his mind and is now making every effort to prevent the “Don Treats” from being shown in the movies.
“When we shot, Leo wanted his Derek to be a real hole in the ass – to an nth degree,” says one of the crew members, who wanted to remain anonymous. “We all wanted to have some fun.” And now Leo has become an important figure, he does not want to drop himself in the eyes of society. ” Director R.D. Robb recently said that with DiCaprio’s filing, they started to persecute him in Hollywood – agents and producers refuse to deal with him, and he can’t find a job. DiCaprio refuses to comment on Robb’s statements, but his reputation after this incident was a little tarnished – in Hollywood they do not like squabble stars. One way or another, today DiCaprio does not talk with his former friends, and those, in turn, are looking for workarounds for the release of the film. Surely they will find them without the approval of a former friend: ten-second excerpts from the Don Treats have already appeared on the Internet.
An even bigger nuisance for DiCaprio was the accusation that his film Basketball Diaries (1995) provoked recent killings in a school in the provincial town of West Paduca in Kentucky. In the film adaptation of the book of the same name by Jim Carroll, DiCaprio played a guy who is addicted to drugs, basketball and poetry (in that order). In one of the fantasy scenes of the film, it is shown how he mentally shoots classmates and teachers. Two years after the release of the film, the 14-year-old boy decided to “play” this scene in real life. During school prayer, he killed three classmates and injured five others before his weapons were taken away. When the police asked him why he did this, the boy said that he really liked how it looked in the film “Basketball Diaries” and that he generally “really likes Leonardo DiCaprio – this is really a cool guy!”
On the same day, the state attorney made an official statement in which, in particular, he said: “I think the film Basketball Diaries has become an important factor on the road to crime. The idea and method of murder was gleaned from the film. ” It’s hard to say how this story will end, but DiCaprio’s reputation has been dealt another blow. The actor was particularly vulnerable to accusations, because the project for the film Basketball Diaries was very dear to him. “This was the first time in my life when I read a script and did not want to put it off,” he says. “Then I met Scott Calvert, who was about to make a film.” It was his directorial debut. Previously, he only shot videos featuring Mark Mark. I didn’t want him to do another shit on the topic “how to take drugs badly.” We talked, and I realized that we can find a common language. It was the first film I made with rapture! ”
Of course, there were some oddities. Calvert wanted to invite Marks to the second role, who at that time rattled all over America in advertising underwear. DiCaprio at first rested tightly, and Scott had to persuade him for a long time so that he agreed to at least see his sample. The test turned out to be good, Marks Mark was taken for the role. “In the end, I thought, if I had to advertise underwear and some type would refuse to see my sample in a serious film because of this, it would be unfair,” says DiCaprio. “We did the test, and Mark was just superb!”
DiCaprio not only agreed that Marki Mark became his partner (for the sake of filming a movie, he abandoned his rapper pseudonym and appeared in the credits under the real name Mark Wahlberg), but also became very friendly with him during the filming. The yellow press wrote that their relationship went beyond friendship, but DiCaprio only laughs when asked if he is bisexual? “Marka and I pulled ourselves out in clubs, because the shooting days were very difficult and after work I wanted to ventilate. We were so tired that the girls did not have enough strength. But reporters are bored if there are no girls for two guys. Therefore, they came up with a love affair for us. But I assure you that physically I love Mark no more than his music! ”
DiCaprio is not a big fan of pop and rap. His favorite band is Pink Floyd. He also recognizes the Beatles and Led Zeppelin. Favorite book – “The Old Man and the Sea” by Hemingway. Favorite films are all three episodes of The Godfather. Favorite actors – Robert De Niro, Jack Nicholson, Meg Ryan. The directors are John Cassavetes, Fellini and Hitchcock. And of those with whom he had to work, he distinguishes Cameron (“a fantastic man and makes science fiction films”), as well as the Australian Baz Lurman, who directed “Romeo and Juliet.”
In this 1996 sensational movie that made DiCaprio a big mainstream star, Baz Lurman moves heroes from medieval Italy to a country called MTV Youth Movies: firearms instead of swords, disco costumes instead of old clothes, and California popular instead of Venice Venice Beach. Lurman from the very beginning wanted to put on a tense and sexy film that today’s youth will run to. Only the Shakespearean text remained untouched. “For those who have not read the play, it seems like an ancient classic,” the 23-year-old actor boldly declares. “But if you read it carefully, it becomes clear that Romeo was a real tough guy, a kind of gigolo, who suddenly fell in love with a girl named Juliet.” This is a story about how a person suffered and he can not stop. Nowadays, these guys run away to Las Vegas, because there you can get married the fastest, and then … but this is the beauty of the story. These guys had a lot of courage. “
Leonardo DiCaprio became the ideal Romeo of the end of the millennium – sensual, passionate, a little cynical and surprisingly touching in his blinding with true love. “From the very beginning, I saw in the role of Romeo only one actor – Leonardo DiCaprio,” says Lurman. – Fate was favorable to us – as we were preparing the project, Leonardo became an increasingly popular star in the United States. I wrote to him about our project and invited me to call on a visit. He very politely answered my invitation and soon flew with his father to Australia. I told him in detail about the project, showed the ready-made storyboards, and Leonardo fired up with this idea. Meanwhile, he was nominated for an Oscar for Gilbert Grape, and the case immediately moved off the ground. Of course, now he asked for much larger fees, but when I invited him to Australia for the second time for film screenings, he did not demand any money, he did everything for free. I shot his sample on videotape, he was just great. This test became my trump card when I started offering the project to studios. ”
Lurman was not mistaken in the choice. Leonardo DiCaprio plunged into the text of the Renaissance with amazing ease. While all the other actors with great difficulty adapted to the expressions of Shakespeare, DiCaprio instantly mastered his cues, and all
the rest of the time mimicking partners. “I was just mad at how easy it was for him,” recalls his colleague John Leguizamo. – He looked like a typical representative of the golden youth – a sort of asshole who has everything. He stands, smokes a cigarette, portrays Michael Jackson so that everyone rolls with laughter, and then enters the frame, and he is already Romeo! ”
Baz Lurman believes that showing off DiCaprio is the key to acting success. “People say that Marlon Brando, in his youth, also loved playing his colleagues on the set,” says Lurman. “Some of his jokes were really cruel.” Thirty characters also crawl out of Leonardo at the same time. He portrayed me constantly, and very sarcastically, cruelly and accurately. But acting is essentially antics. If this helps him to be in shape, I have to put up with it. ” When the crew of “Romeo and Juliet” went to shoot nature in Mexico City, it turned out that all Mexican girls are crazy about handsome Leo. “All the girls in the city were hunting him,” recalls Leguizamo. – They did not give him a pass. We tried to turn their attention to us, but where there! ”
During filming in Mexico City, young people constantly arranged revelry at the hotel, which housed the film crew. “I think we behaved in a very inappropriate way,” says Paul Rudd, who plays Paris, reluctantly. – When one of DiCaprio’s friends arrived, we pumped him up so that he wandered naked through the corridors of the hotel and asked the guards for the keys to his room. And at that time we shot it with a hidden camera. It was some kind of madness. ” Leonardo DiCaprio willingly supports his reputation as a “crap romantic” Hollywood. From the very beginning of his career, the most incredible rumors circulated about him; he had fun for five, hooligan for ten, and always kept on an equal footing with Hollywood celebrities.
In 1994, Sharon Stone herself wanted him to become her partner in the movie “Fast and Dead”; when the studio settled down, the star announced that she would pay DiCaprio’s fee from her pocket. And during the filming it was reported that the 36-year-old diva and her 20-year-old partner found a common language not only on the set …
DiCaprio maintained his reputation as a seducer and pervert, not only by stormy romance novels, but also by risky film projects: in the historical drama Agnieszka Holland, “Total Eclipse,” he played the role of French poet Arthur Rimbaud, prone to homosexuality and suicidal dreams. But the film, which tells about the homosexual relationship of Rimbaud and Paul Verlaine, caused many bewildered questions from the fans of the actor, a hail of ridicule in the yellow press and the polite rejection of the intellectual public.
Obviously, today DiCaprio is taking on the blocking of the rental of Don Delicacies to atone for this mistake. American young ladies want to see DiCaprio in the roles of lover heroes, and he eagerly meets them: after the Titanic, in the costume and adventurous film The Man in the Iron Mask, he will play King Louis and his double. But DiCaprio is not going to change his lifestyle. He can always be seen at parties, shows, presentations, and he does not hide that he likes luxury, admiration of fans and the ability to dictate his conditions.
Perhaps all this is the result of a rather gloomy childhood: DiCaprio grew up with a single mother in the poor neighborhoods of Los Angeles. However, he himself declares that he felt great, being the only child: mother was not distracted by her brothers and sisters, and all the love went to one handsome Leo.
Leonardo DiCaprio was born on November 11, 1974 in Los Angeles. His mother claims that she decided to name him in honor of Leonardo Da Vinci, because, being pregnant, she admired the canvases of the great artist. Parents of the future movie star were hippies. His mother, having come from Germany to the USA to study at college, met George, Leo’s future father; they soon moved to Los Angeles because it was rumored to be the coolest place on Earth. Then they traveled a lot, but invariably returned to the capital of the film business.
Leo grew up in Los Felice, an area he calls the “Hollywood Ghetto.” In childhood, he was often called Noodle – for long blond hair to his shoulders. Sometimes he was mistaken for a girl – it was painfully brightly dressed. Mother and father finally parted when he was less than a year old. Mother went to work as a secretary in court because the father could not fully support her and her son: he traded comics, but things were not going very well, and he soon got a new family. The boy was left to his own devices, so he learned too early about what a child at his age should not have known at all.
“I remember coming to the playground and seeing a guy who was selling drugs,” recalls DiCaprio. He plowed up the cloak, showing syringes attached from the inside. When I was five years old, I saw from the balcony of my friend how two homosexuals are making love in a neighboring house. I still can’t forget it. ”
In early childhood, Leo dreamed of becoming an oceanologist – he was interested in books about dolphins, whales and other sea creatures. He later said that if he could not become an actor, he would go to the Institute of Oceanography. And now, when he is cutting free time, he is trying to spend it on the seashore.
But in Los Felice every day he saw a completely different thing: dirt, poverty and hopelessness. And then one day, Leo realized how to break out of this world. The father, who maintained good relations with his mother, said that his son from his second wife earned a lot of money by starring in an advertising clip. “I asked Dad how much Adam earned,” recalls DiCaprio. – He said: “About 50 thousand.” I was stunned. Fifty thousand dollars! For several days in my head only one thought revolved: my brother earned 50 thousand dollars! It started me up so that I immediately decided that I would follow in his footsteps. True, for a long time I believed that he can play much better than me. “
Even today, DiCaprio eagerly stars in commercials if they pay well for it. From the very beginning of his career, he set himself a strict condition: the main thing is money, so work until the seventh sweat, and you will relax only when you become a star. However, the incident with “Treats of the Don” showed that you can’t relax in show business at all …
Leo began acting in commercials at the age of five. By the age of 10, he was mortally tired of doing what adults ordered, and he decided that show business was not for him. In addition, almost all the money had to be given to mom, and then the agent told him to change his name and hairstyle. He could come to terms with the change of name, but shave off his blond hair – fire! Leo said that he did not intend to withdraw anymore and for four years he resigned the “tenth muse”.
He was 14 years old when he decided to try his luck again. By that time, he already realized that he was hardly destined to make a career in areas requiring perseverance, diligence and knowledge in the natural sciences. He hated mathematics with all his heart, and even today at the mention of this subject snarls: “I have an accountant! And if you need to calculate taxes, let the tax inspector do it! ” In other subjects, he studied somehow and, according to his admission, crawled from class to class only thanks to a desk neighbor with an exotic name Mustafa, who blocked him when he copied from the textbook, and generously let him write off at his place, if Leo forgot textbook.
“I don’t understand why they cannot teach children what they really want to know,” DiCaprio says nonchalantly. “The only thing I learned at school is to cheat.” But now this skill is completely useless to me. ” Leo, 14, decided it was time to make money on his own. Studying in the eighth grade, he began dating girls, but money for entertainment was sorely lacking. Leo found an agent who did not object to his name and long hair and soon already went to all open auditions conducted by filmmakers and television people.
For a long time, only tiny roles on television were entrusted to him, in particular, in the TV series New Lassie and Santa Barbara. But in 1991, he managed to get into the cinema – he played one of the main roles in the third series of the horror film “Critters.” Almost simultaneously, he got into the youth series of the ABC television channel “Growing Pain”, and in 1992, having defeated more than 400 competitors, he won the selection competition for the role of Tobias Wolf in the film “This Boy’s Life”. A 19-year-old boy, who had never studied acting in his life, showed himself to be a worthy partner of Robert De Niro, and critics proclaimed that DiCaprio is the new Brando and new James Dean combined, and journalists saw him as a new star and sex symbol for youth.
In a paradoxical way, it was DiCaprio’s sexy appearance that almost became an obstacle to his role as the mentally retarded brother Johnny Depp in the film “What’s Eating Gilbert Grape?”. DiCaprio had to go through many tests to prove to director Lass Hallstrom that he could play a groomed fool. The role of the mentally retarded Ernie brought DiCaprio an Oscar nomination. Hollywood experts believe that he lost only a few votes to Tommy Lee Jones. However, DiCaprio himself frivolously assures that he is even glad that he did not get the golden figurine.
“I hate speaking to an audience,” he says. – One thought that in case of victory I will have to go on stage and say something in front of the billion people who watch the Oscars, terrified me. When my mother and I arrived at the ceremony, everyone began to say that I could well win, and my hands began to shake. The winner in the nomination “Best Supporting Actor” is announced as one of the first, so I wanted to escape to the toilet and sit there. But my mother was nearby, I did not want to embarrass her. Therefore, I sat with a glued smile and thought only of one thing: I did not prepare my homework, that is, the speech of the winner. And when the name of Tommy Lee Jones was announced, I had a feeling that I remember at school: you did not learn a terribly difficult rule, the teacher looks in the journal, you expect to be called upon with fear, and your neighbor will be the victim. I was infinitely happy for Tommy Lee Jones: he saved me from embarrassment in front of the whole world! ”
Since then, DiCaprio has not been nominated for an Oscar (although he won the Berlin Festival last year for Best Actor in the film Romeo and Juliet). But today they say that the premiere of “Titanic” was not accidentally postponed from the summer to the “Oscar-winning” time – the end of the year. Perhaps the film will be nominated for the Academy Award in several categories, and one of them will be a male actor … Probably, that would be fair. “Titanic” was the hardest project in the film biography of DiCaprio. At the end of work on this tape, the actor was asked what he intends to do next, and the workaholic DiCaprio answered for the first time in his life: to rest. However, his rest is not quite traditional. In his spare time, DiCaprio loves to parachute, float on rivers with fast currents, jump off a cliff, tied with an elastic rope – in a word, have fun so that life after these entertainments seems like a paradise.
“I love to do what causes fear,” he admits. – Recently jumped from an airplane, but the main parachute did not open. I flew for a long time in free fall, until I worked a spare. Skydiving is the craziest sport. After this incident, I recorded a message for myself on videotape. I look at the camera and say: “Leonardo, you jumped for the last time. This was the first meeting with death. I want you to learn a proper lesson from this story. ”
But with all his extravagant hobbies, DiCaprio does not forget his parents – he lives only five minutes drive from his mother’s house and constantly visits her. Recently, there are rumors that he is building for her a “perfect home.” He also maintains good relations with his father, especially since he now actually works for his son: helps him to select scenarios. And the mother is engaged in his financial affairs. But as a loving son, Romeo’s 1996 model still retains his crap-like habits: he loves, for example, taking things for free from saleswomen, using his popularity. It is known that he writes poetry, but so far no one has read these verses. But in the yellow press with enviable regularity reports are published about his adventures with the most fashionable beauties of America, and each time with different ones. DiCaprio is not at all embarrassed.
“I worked with Sharon Stone,” he says. “She gave me good advice: if you became famous, consider it your advantage over other people.” Only in this way can you become stronger. Therefore, I am not going to hide from people. I will not sit in a hotel or in a villa behind a steel fence. I do not want to turn into a suspicious recluse. I like my lifestyle. “I must not adapt to a career, but a career should adapt to me!”