Hollywood Spotlight: Leonardo DiCaprio

14 views December 2, 2019 6:30 AM

He is producing one of the hottest upcoming movies Richard Jewell (2019) film with features in Titanic (1997), Catch Me If You Can (2002), Blood Diamond (2006), Inception (2010), The Great Gatsby (2013), The Wolf of Wall Street (2013), and The Revenant (2015). This week’s Hollywood Spotlight highlights the multi-award winning American actor and film producer Leonardo DiCaprio, whose production Richard Jewell (2019) is set to release on Dec. 13, 2019.

Born on November 11th, 1974 in Los Angeles, Leonardo Wilhelm DiCaprio is the son of Irmelin and George DiCaprio. Interestingly enough, DiCaprio was named Leonardo because his pregnant mother was looking at a Leonardo da Vinci painting in the Uffizi museum in Florence, Italy, when he first kicked. He attended Seeds Elementary School and later went to John Marshall High School a few blocks away after attending the Los Angeles Center for Enriched Studies for four years. DiCaprio said he hated attending public school, and often asked his mother to take him to auditions instead to improve their financial situation. He dropped out of high school following his third year, eventually earning his GED.

His acting career started in 1991, when DiCaprio played an uncredited role in one episode of Roseanne. His film debut came later that year in the low-budget horror direct-to-video film Critters 3, in which he played the stepson of an evil landlord. Later in 1992, DiCaprio played a supporting role in the first installment of the Poison Ivy film series, and was handpicked by Robert De Niro out of 400 young actors to play the lead role in Michael Caton-Jones's This Boy's Life. In 1996, DiCaprio appeared opposite Claire Danes in Baz Luhrmann's film Romeo + Juliet, a film that achieved a worldwide box office take of $147 million, and helped him earn a Silver Bear for Best Actor at the 1997 Berlin International Film Festival.

DiCaprio’s big breakthrough came when he turned down an offer to do the film Boogie Nights (1997) to star alongside Kate Winslet in James Cameron's Titanic (1997) .Against expectations, Titanic went on to become the highest-grossing film to that point, eventually grossing more than $2.1 billion and transformed DiCaprio into a superstar. The film won 11 Academy Awards - the most for any film - including Best Picture, but DiCaprio's failure to gain a nomination led to a protest against the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences by more than 200 fans. He was nominated for other high-profile awards, including a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor.

Since Titanic, DiCaprio has starred in many award winning films ranging from Catch Me If You Can (2002) to Inception (2010) to The Wolf of Wall Street (2013). Just these three films combined have grossed over $1.5 billion over their respective lifetimes, with the success of these movies being highly credited to DiCaprio himself. His stellar performances in these movies only lead him even further to a different genre with The Revenant (2015), where he earned his first ever Academy Award, an accolade he had yet to achieve.

With such a wealth of experience in the action genre, it will be interesting to see his role within the film Richard Jewell. Richard Jewell, set to release on Dec. 13, 2019. The film follows Richard Jewell’s life during the events that led to an attack at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia, where Jewell worked as a security guard at AT&T when he discovered the plot that resulted in the Centennial Olympic Park bombing.

Here are some more fun facts about Leonardo DiCaprio:

  • DiCaprio is identified as one of the most active celebrities in the climate change movement. He established the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation in 1998, a non-profit organization devoted to promoting environmental awareness.

  • DiCaprio is heavily involved in philanthropy. In 2010, he donated $1 million to relief efforts in Haiti after the earthquake. In April 2013, DiCaprio donated $61,000 to the gay rights group GLAAD. After Hurricane Harvey in 2017, DiCaprio provided $1 million to the United Way Harvey Recovery Fund through his foundation.

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