Home >> Write >> People In The News >> Movies >> Stars in Drama >> Leonardo Dicaprio
Leonardo Dicaprio has reinvented himself from a 1990s teenage heartthrob into a seriously talented dramatic actor. Leonardo Dicaprio has been a name in film for over a decade, starring in major movies like romeo + juliet, titanic, Catch Me if You Can, The Aviator, and the departed. Leonardo Dicaprio has been most famous in recent years for these collaborations with Martin Scorsese, including this year’s the departed, as well as for his environmentalist and political work. When leonardo dicaprio first broke onto the film scene, it was certainly with a bang as he received an Oscar nomination for his role as Johnny Depp’s mentally challenged little brother in What’s Eating Gilbert Grape? It did not take long for the young leonardo dicaprio to be chosen for more romantic roles, however. Leonardo Dicaprio had the blue eyes, cute smile, and good hair; in other words, the makings of a teenage idol. While it was at first difficult for leonardo dicaprio to break away from his titanic movie image, a brief hiatus and a return with some critically acclaimed films reinvented his career and films like the departed and Blood Diamond seem like just the beginning. When leonardo dicaprio was cast in Baz Luhrman’s film version of romeo and juliet, his teenage fans went wild. Luhrman’s romeo + juliet was not the typical Shakespeare adaptation, however, and romeo and juliet speaks to leonardo dicaprio’s ability to pick great roles in unconventional films.
In Luhrman’s romeo and juliet, Leonardo Dicaprio plays the Romeo who falls in love with Claire Danes as Juliet. There are gang wars between the family of leonardo dicaprio and that of Juliet, however, and the tragedy of Shakespeare’s romeo and juliet remains. This film adaptation of romeo + juliet breathes new life into Shakespeare. Rather than a stuffy literary adaptation, romeo and juliet brings an edge to the play that speaks to a new generation. You could even credit romeo + juliet with starting the chain of Shakespeare adaptations for teenagers in the 1990s. Leonardo Dicaprio gained positive attention from both critics and audiences for romeo and juliet, which helped lead to his most popular role. When leonardo dicaprio starred in the titanic movie, he made himself an immediate international star. One look at Leonardo Dicaprio standing in a suit at the bottom of the stairs on the titanic, waiting for Kate Winslet and smiling that boyish smile made girls everywhere fall in love with him.
The success of titanic was not just due to its massive scope as a film but also to the charm of both Kate Winslet and leonardo dicaprio as the leads. The success of titanic made leonardo dicaprio a superstar for teenage girls everywhere. Leonardo Dicaprio has stated that he never expects to see the amount of popularity the titanic movie brought him again but that he also never wants it. As the titanic movie catapulted leonardo dicaprio into stardom, it enforced the image of Leonardo Dicaprio as pretty boy rather than serious actor. While Kate Winslet received an Academy Award nomination for titanic, leonardo dicaprio was snubbed and passed off as eye candy. Following titanic, Leonardo Dicaprio made The Beach, a film about a group of backpackers who get into dangerous trouble in Thailand.
After the success of the titanic movie, the audience that the leonardo dicaprio name drew in expected something different than The Beach and the film did poorly at the box office. But despite expectations raised by titanic, Leonardo Dicaprio did his own thing with the beach and enforced a new image that was edgier and more mature. This new edgier image would only carry on with Gangs of New York, the departed, and Blood Diamond. The hiatus leonardo dicaprio took from the public eye while filming Gangs of New York and Catch Me if You Can proved necessary to jump-start his career.
In Gangs of New York, leonardo dicaprio certainly does not look like the titanic movie pretty boy, as he grew his hair long and gained a significant amount of weight. Catch Me If You Can, however, is a light and fun comedy that briefly brought leonardo dicaprio back into teenage girls’ hearts with that cheeky smile and charm. Leonardo Dicaprio has recently proved himself to be an actor to be taken seriously, however, with his Oscar-worthy performances in The Aviator, Blood Diamond, and the departed. The collaborative relationship between leonardo dicaprio and Martin Scorsese has led some people to call Leonardo Dicaprio Scorsese’s new De Niro. But leonardo dicaprio plays very different roles than those volatile characters played by De Niro. Leonardo Dicaprio seems to be better suited to the new Scorsese who has become more interested in biopics and historical adaptations. In the departed, leonardo dicaprio plays a mole for the FBI working to crack a mafia ring led by Jack Nicholson. The film the departed is a remake of a French film called Internal Affairs. While Scorsese is not known for remakes, the departed proved to be the best Hollywood film of the year. Leonardo Dicaprio received both a Golden Globe and an Oscar nomination for his work. Besides the departed, leonardo dicaprio also received a nomination for his work in Blood Diamond. While Leonardo Dicaprio did not win for either film, his work in the departed and Blood Diamond has proved that leonardo dicaprio is a name to take seriously.
Leonardo Dicaprio has come a long way from his beginnings as a Tiger Beat Cover boy. In romeo + juliet and the titanic movie, leonardo dicaprio proved he was perfect as the charming romantic lead. Yet since The Beach, Leonardo Dicaprio has most often opted for gritty and edgy drama over softer roles. The work leonardo dicaprio has done with Gangs of New York, the departed, and Blood Diamond has proved his worth as a dramatic actor. Recently leonardo dicaprio has come more into the public eye with his work with environmentalist movements. At the Oscars in 2007, Leonardo Dicaprio took the stage with Al Gore to support the fight against global warming.