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Leonardo Wilhelm DiCaprio (born November 11, 1974) is an American actor and film producer whose career rose with his role in the television sit-com Growing Pains.His critically acclaimed breakthrough film performance came in This Boy's Life, and was quickly followed by What's Eating Gilbert Grape. His performance as the mentally handicapped brother of Gilbert (Johnny Depp), in the title role, brought him nominations for the Golden Globe and Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.

He gained fame for his role as Jack Dawson in Titanic, and has starred in many other successful films including Romeo + Juliet, Catch Me If You Can, and Blood Diamond, for which he was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor. Another Academy Award nomination came for his role as Howard Hughes in The Aviator, directed by Martin Scorsese. He has also worked with Scorsese in films such as Gangs of New York and The Departed. This working partnership brought comparison to the earlier working relationship between Scorsese and actor Robert De Niro, who also benefited from roles in Scorsese films early in his career.

DiCaprio has also been nominated two times for BAFTA, three times for SAG, and seven Golden Globe Awards. He is a Golden Globe and a Silver Bear Award winner.

Early life

DiCaprio was born in Los Angelesmarker, Californiamarker, the only child of Irmelin (née Indenbirken), a former legal secretary, and George DiCaprio, an underground comic artist and producer/distributor of comic books. His mother moved from Oer-Erkenschwickmarker, Germanymarker, to the U.S. during the 1950s, while his father is a fourth-generation American of half Italian and half German descent. His maternal grandmother, Helene Indenbirken, who was born Yelena Smirnova, was a Russianmarker immigrant to Germanymarker.DiCaprio's parents met while attending college together and subsequently moved to Los Angeles. He was named Leonardo because his pregnant mother was looking at a Leonardo da Vinci painting in a museum in Italymarker when DiCaprio first kicked. His parents divorced when he was a year old and he lived mostly with his mother, although his father was around intermittently. During his childhood, he attended Seeds Elementary School. He was interested in baseball cards, comic books, and he frequently visited museums with his father. DiCaprio and his mother lived in several neighborhoods such as Echo Parkmarker.

During his teen years, he lived at 1874 Hillhurst Avenue, Los Feliz districtmarker of Los Angeles, California (which was later converted into a local public library) and his mother worked several jobs to support them. He graduated from John Marshall High Schoolmarker a few blocks away, after attending the Los Angeles Center for Enriched Studies for four years.

Career

Early career

DiCaprio's career began with his appearing in several commercials and educational films. He got his break on television in 1990 when he was cast in the short-lived series based on the movie Parenthood. On set, he met another struggling child actor, Tobey Maguire. The two quickly became friends and made a pact to help each other find roles in TV and movies. After Parenthood, DiCaprio had bit parts on several shows, including The New Lassie and Roseanne, as well as a brief stint on the soap opera Santa Barbara, playing the young Mason Capwell.

His debut film role was Critters 3, a B-grade horror film, which later went straight to video. Soon after, in 1991, he became a recurring cast member on the hit ABC sitcom Growing Pains, playing Luke Brower, a homeless boy who is taken in by the Seavers.

His breakthrough came in 1992, when he beat out hundreds of other boys for the role of Toby Wolff in This Boy's Life, co-starring Robert De Niro and Ellen Barkin. His performance as the troubled, abused teenager was critically acclaimed and Hollywood soon took notice. Later in 1993, he co-starred as the mentally handicapped brother to Johnny Depp in What's Eating Gilbert Grape. His performance earned him both Academy Award and Golden Globe nominations for best supporting actor.

1995 was an eventful year for DiCaprio. That year he starred in four movies; in the first one, The Quick and the Dead, he played Gene Hackman's alleged son, Fee, starring alongside Sharon Stone and Russell Crowe.

After The Quick and The Dead, he starred in Total Eclipse, a fictionalized account of the homosexual relationship between Paul Verlaine (David Thewlis) and Arthur Rimbaud. River Phoenix was originally cast as Rimbaud, but died before production.

The black-and-white film Don's Plum, a low budget drama featuring the actor and his friends (including Tobey Maguire) was filmed between 1995 and 1996. Its release was blocked by DiCaprio and Maguire, who argued that they never intended to make it a theatrical release. Nevertheless, it premiered in Berlinmarker in 2001.

Also in 1995, he starred as Jim Caroll in The Basketball Diaries, a life story of drugs and prostitution. Baz Luhrmann's 1996 film Romeo + Juliet, again featured DiCaprio as the male lead and was one of the first films to cash in on DiCaprio's future star-status, with a worldwide box office take of $147 million. Later that year he starred in Marvin's Room, reuniting with Robert De Niro and appearing alongside Meryl Streep and Diane Keaton.

Superstardom and "Leo-Mania"

The move from "star" to "superstar" came when DiCaprio played Jack Dawson in the 1997 blockbuster Titanic, alongside Kate Winslet as Rose DeWitt Bukater, which soon became the highest grossing film of all time and received 11 Oscars. In 1998, he made a cameo appearance in Woody Allen's satire Celebrity. That year he also starred in the dual roles of the villainous King Louis XIV and his secret, sympathetic twin brother Philippe in The Man in the Iron Mask. His popularity at the time was dubbed "Leo-mania", comparing his sudden fame and fan frenzy to that of the Beatles in the 1960s, known as Beatlemania. The Man in the Iron Mask may have benefited from Leo-Mania, considering its remarkably high worldwide box office gross (especially outside North-America) despite mediocre reviews.

DiCaprio, 2000
What came with fame were tales in the tabloids of excesses and indulgence. Time summed up the fame superhighway and its trappings in an interview with the actor in 2000, reporting:
DiCaprio still thinks of himself as an edgy indie actor, not the Tiger Beat cover boy. "I have no connection with me during that whole Titanic Phenomenon and what my face became around the world," DiCaprio commented, adding, "I'll never reach that state of popularity again, and I don't expect to. It's not something I'm going to try to achieve either."


Nonetheless, the headlines and controversy failed to let up, peaking when he starred in a project by Danny Boyle based on Alex Garland's backpacker cult classic The Beach that year. Because of clashes with the Thai authorities over the use of the island of Ko Phi Phimarker in 1999, the film garnered more bad press than expected. It was reported that permission granted to the film company to physically alter the environment inside Phi Phi Islands National Park was illegal.

Acting acclaim

In 2002, DiCaprio starred in Gangs of New York (directed by Martin Scorsese) and Catch Me If You Can (directed by Steven Spielberg). Both films were very well received by critics. Forging a collaboration with Scorsese, the two paired again for a biopic of American aviation pioneer Howard Hughes in The Aviator, a film that scored DiCaprio a second Academy Award nomination, for Best Actor.


DiCaprio continued his run with Scorsese (some call him Scorsese's "new De Niro") in the 2006 film The Departed as Billy Costigan, a smart undercover cop in Boston. His next film was Blood Diamond, released in December 2006. The film itself received generally favorable reviews and DiCaprio was praised for the authenticity of his South African Afrikaner accent, known as a difficult accent to emulate.

In 2006, the Golden Globes and Broadcast Film Critics Association nominated DiCaprio twice in the same category: Best Actor for Blood Diamond and The Departed. Also in the same year, he received two nominations for the Screen Actors Guild Awards, a lead actor nomination for Blood Diamond and a supporting actor nomination for The Departed. He earned an Oscar nomination for lead actor in Blood Diamond and a BAFTA nod for lead actor for The Departed.

Recent work

DiCaprio starred in 2008's Body of Lies, directed by Ridley Scott and co-starring Russell Crowe, Vince Colosimo, and Golshifteh Farahani. The same year, he appeared in Revolutionary Road, an adaptation of Richard Yates' 1961 novel. The latter reunited DiCaprio with his Titanic costars Kate Winslet and Kathy Bates. DiCaprio was nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama for his performance.

DiCaprio will star in Shutter Island, a film adaptation of the novel of the same name by Dennis Lehane. He will also play in the science-fiction film Inception, directed and produced by Christopher Nolan.

Environmental activism and charity

A committed environmentalist, DiCaprio has received praise from environmental groups for opting to fly on commercial flights instead of chartering private jets. He has also mentioned that he drives a hybrid car and that his house has solar panels. His actions have inspired other celebrities, such as Orlando Bloom and Penelope Cruz. In an article in Ukula about his new film 11th Hour (which he co-wrote, co-produced and narrated), DiCaprio cites global warming as "the number one environmental challenge." DiCaprio and former vice-president Al Gore announced at the 2007 Oscar ceremony that the Oscars had incorporated environmentally intelligent practices throughout the planning and production processes, thus affirming their commitment to the environment. On July 7, 2007, DiCaprio presented at the American leg of Live Earth. During the 2004 Presidential election, DiCaprio campaigned and donated to John Kerry's presidential bid.

In 1998, DiCaprio and his mother donated $35,000 for a state-of-the-art “Leonardo DiCaprio Computer Center” at the Los Feliz branch of the Los Angeles Public Library (1874 Hillhurst Avenue) which happens to be the site of his childhood home. It was rebuilt after the 1994 Northridge earthquake, and opened in early 1999.

During the filming of Blood Diamond, DiCaprio worked with 24 orphaned children from the SOS Children's Village in Maputo, Mozambiquemarker, and was said to be extremely touched by his interactions with the children.

He was invited to The Scottish Parliamentmarker at Holyrood in Edinburghmarker, Scotlandmarker, to talk about his environmental foundation to teach people about global warming. It is not yet known if he has accepted the offer, due to his busy schedule in Hollywoodmarker.

FEC showed DiCaprio gave $2300 to Barack Obama's presidential campaign in the 2008 U.S. Presidential election, the maximum contribution an individual can give in an election cycle.

Personal life

DiCaprio dated Brazilian model Gisele Bündchen on and off from 2001 to 2005, and has also dated Kristen Zang. Since 2005, he has dated Israeli model Bar Refaeli. Their relationship ended in 2009. He is close friends with Tobey Maguire and Titanicmarker and Revolutionary Road co-star Kate Winslet. He was childhood friends with the late Christopher Pettiet.

On August 5, 2008, DiCaprio's maternal grandmother, Helene Indenbirken (b. July 7, 1915), died in Oer-Erkenschwickmarker, Germanymarker, at the age of 93. His grandmother was an important pillar in his life; DiCaprio called her "Oma" (Grandma) and took her to some of his movie premieres. He had visited her in Germany in the last days of her life.

DiCaprio owns a home in Los Angeles and an apartment in TriBeCamarker, in Manhattanmarker, New York. He bought an island in Belizemarker where he is planning to create an eco-friendly resort, as well as an apartment in Riverhouse, an eco-friendly building overlooking the Hudson River in Manhattan.

DiCaprio has said in interviews that his favorite TV show is The Twilight Zone and he plans to make a series of movies based on episodes written by Rod Serling.

Filmography

As actor

Year Film Role Notes
1991 Critters 3 Josh
1992 Poison Ivy Guy
1993 This Boy's Life Tobias "Toby" Wolff
What's Eating Gilbert Grape Arnie Grape Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Emerging Actor
National Board of Review Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated — Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture


1994 The Foot Shooting Party
1995 The Quick and the Dead Fee Herod, "The Kid"
The Basketball Diaries Jim Carroll
Total Eclipse Arthur Rimbaud
1996 Romeo + Juliet Romeo Montague Blockbuster Entertainment Award for Favorite Actor - Romance
Silver Bear for Best Actor
Nominated — MTV Movie Award for Best On-Screen Duo shared with Claire Danes
Nominated — MTV Movie Award for Best Kiss shared with Claire Danes
Nominated — MTV Movie Award for Best Performance



Marvin's Room Hank Chlotrudis Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated — Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Cast - Motion Picture
1997 Titanic Jack Dawson Blockbuster Entertainment Award for Favorite Actor - Drama
MTV Movie Award for Best Performance
Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama
Nominated — MTV Movie Award for Best On-Screen Duo shared with Kate Winslet
Nominated — MTV Movie Award for Best Kiss shared with Kate Winslet
Nominated — Satellite Award for Best Actor - Motion Picture Drama
Nominated — Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture





1998 The Man in the Iron Mask King Louis XIV/Philippe
Celebrity Brandon Darrow Nominated — Teen Choice Award for Choice Hissy Fit — Film
2000 The Beach Richard Nominated — Teen Choice Award for Choice Actor — Film
Nominated — Teen Choice Award for Choice Chemistry shared with Virginie Ledoyen
2001 Don's Plum Derek filmed in 1995 released in 2001
2002 Catch Me If You Can Frank William Abagnale Jr. Teen Choice Award for Choice Movie Liar
Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama
Nominated — MTV Movie Award for Best Performance

Gangs of New York Amsterdam Vallon Nominated — MTV Movie Award for Best Kiss shared with Cameron Diaz
Nominated — Teen Choice Award for Choice Movie Liplock shared with Cameron Diaz
2004 The Aviator Howard Hughes Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama
MTV Movie Award for Best Performance
Nominated — Academy Award for Best Actor
Nominated — BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role
Nominated — Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor
Nominated — London Film Critics Circle Award for Best Actor
Nominated — Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Actor
Nominated — Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
Nominated — Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role
Nominated — Teen Choice Award for Choice Movie Actor — Drama
Nominated - Visual Effects Society Award for Outstanding Performance by an Actor or Actress in a Visual Effects Film









2006 Blood Diamond Danny Archer Nominated — Academy Award for Best Actor
Nominated — Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor
Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama
Nominated — Satellite Award for Best Actor - Motion Picture Drama
Nominated — Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role
Nominated — Teen Choice Award for Choice Movie Actor — Drama




The Departed William "Billy" Costigan Jr. Austin Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor
Central Ohio Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor
International Cinephile Society Award for Best Actor
Irish Film and Television Audience Award for Best International Actor
National Board of Review Award for Best Cast
Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated — BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role
Nominated — Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor
Nominated — Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor
Nominated — Empire Award for Best Actor
Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama
Nominated — Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Actor
Nominated — People's Choice Award for Best On-Screen Match-Up shared with Matt Damon and Jack Nicholson
Nominated — Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
Nominated — Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role
Nominated — Teen Choice Awards - Choice Movie Actor: Drama














2007 The 11th Hour Narrator/Producer
2008 Body of Lies Roger Ferris
Revolutionary Road Frank Wheeler Palm Springs International Film Festival Award for Best Ensemble Performance
Nominated — Detroit Film Critics Society Award for Best Actor
Nominated — Detroit Film Critics Society Award for Best Cast
Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama
Nominated — Satellite Award for Best Actor - Motion Picture Drama



2010 Shutter Island Edward "Teddy" Daniels post-production
Inception Cobb post-production
2011 The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt Theodore Roosevelt announced
The Chancellor Manuscript Peter Chancellor announced


As producer

Year Title Notes
2004 The Assassination of Richard Nixon Executive producer
The Aviator Executive producer
2007 The 11th Hour Producer
Gardener of Eden Producer
2008 Greensburg Producer
2009 Atari Producer
Orphan Producer
2010 Beat the Reaper Producer pre-production
The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt Producer announced
2011 The Chancellor Manuscript Producer announced
Conspiracy of Fools Producer announced


TV series

Year Title Role Notes
1990 Parenthood Garry Buckman Nominated — Young Artist Award for Best Young Actor Starring in a Television Series
The New Lassie Young Boy Episode "Livewire"
Santa Barbara Young Mason Capwell Nominated — Young Artist Award for Best Young Actor in a Daytime Series
1991 Roseanne Darlene's Classmate Episode - "Home-Ec"
1991-92 Growing Pains Luke Brower He joined the cast in the last season.
Nominated — Young Artist Award for Best Young Actor Co-starring in a Television Series


Other awards and nominations

Year Group Award Outcome
1993 Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards New Generation Award Won
2004 Hollywood Film Festival Actor of the Year Won


References

  1. Interview with Leonardo DiCaprio’s Oma


External links




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