Heartthrob. Environmentalist. Oscar Winner (Finally).
Since first appearing on screen in 1979, Leonardo DiCaprio has carved out an impressive career in television and film, rocketing to international fame after playing Jack in the epic romance Titanic. Since then, he has earned critical acclaim for his work in a wide range of genres including Gangs of New York, The Aviator, and the Revenant, which finally earned him an Academy Award.
Here are a few things you may not have known about every supermodel’s favorite actor and man bun enthusiast: Leonardo DiCaprio.
33. Almost Didn’t Play Jack
The studios wanted Matthew McConaughey to play Jack in Titanic, but James Cameron insisted on Leonardo DiCaprio.
32. It’s Bananas!
In 2014, the internet exploded when photographs surfaced of Leonardo DiCaprio posing with bananas, and in a variety of other strange shots. The shots, taken back in 1995 when Leo wasn’t the superstar he is today, were taken by David LaChappelle, the well-known celebrity photographer who sued Rihanna once upon a time. LaChappelle commented on the photos. A simple and probably accurate comment: “I think Leo DiCaprio is still pissed off about posing with those bananas.”
31. Rough Start
DiCaprio’s first onscreen appearance was in the children’s TV show “Romper Room,” but he was fired for being too disruptive.
30. Vitruvian Man
He was named after the artist Leonardo da Vinci because his pregnant mother happened to be standing in front of one of da Vinci’s paintings the first time she felt him kick. Good thing she wasn’t standing in front of a Warhol. Andy DiCaprio doesn’t quite have the same ring to it.
29. The One
An only child, DiCaprio was raised by a single mother, a German national who worked as a legal secretary.
The casting decisions for the movie Inception completely revolved around DiCaprio. Nolan knew that he wanted Leonardo DiCaprio for the role of Cobb, so according to him, “We were just trying to cast the best people I could find for those parts, who felt right around Leo.”
27. The King of the World!
The line "I'm the king of the world!" in Titanic was ad-libbed by Leonardo DiCaprio. It was voted as the #4 of "The 100 Greatest Movie Lines" by Premiere in 2007.
DiCaprio’s mother’s name was Irmelin Indenbirken, which also sounds exactly like something the Muppet’s Swedish Chef would say. His father’s name was George. Which isn’t nearly as funny.
25. Duh, I Did a Bad Thing, George
When he first started out as an actor, his agent suggested he change his name to Lenny Williams to sound “more American.” He wisely declined since John Steinbeck had already ruined the name Lenny for everyone.
24. Not-So-Good Vibrations
Although he’s now one of his best friends, when they first met on the set of 1995’s The Basketball Diaries, Mark Wahlberg and DiCaprio did not like each other.
At the age of 19, he was the 7th youngest actor to ever be nominated for an Academy Award for his role in 1994’s What’s Eating Gilbert Grape. Apparently, what ate Gilbert Grape was not winning that Oscar until 2016.
22. Fantasy Man
Being the heartthrob that he is, there is quite a bit of fan fiction about DiCaprio on the Internet, the best of which is a story about him finally winning an Oscar but only have until the end of the day to live.
21. Book It!
In 1998, he donated a roomful of computers and equipment to the Los Feliz Library, which was built on the site of his childhood home, presumably, after he and his mother moved out.
20. Not So Great
DiCaprio was set to play Alexander the Great in an epic directed by Baz Luhrmann. However, Oliver Stone released a film on the same subject first and derailed that project by proving that nobody wants to watch a three hour movie about Alexander the Great.
19. The Posse
When he partied hard in his early 20s, he rolled with an entourage that included magician David Blaine, actor Tobey Maguire, and writer/director Harmony Korine.
Quentin Tarantino wanted DiCaprio to play the role of the Nazi Colonel Landa in Inglorious Basterds, but DiCaprio said no and the role went to Christoph Waltz, who won his first Oscar for his performance.
17. Worth It
Sharon Stone wanted DiCaprio so badly that she footed the entire bill for his salary in the 1995 film The Quick and the Dead. The movie flopped.
16. A Valuable Skill
He was trained how to shoot a gun by Thell Reed, a fast-draw expert who also trained Brad Pitt, Edward Norton, Val Kilmer, and Russell Crowe.
15. A Complicated Web
DiCaprio was also considered for the titular superhero role in Spider-Man. The role went to his childhood friend Tobey Maguire.
14. Orphan Adoption
While filming Blood Diamond in South Africa, DiCaprio “adopted” a South African baby girl that he met at an orphanage. He sends her a cheque once a month and talks on the phone with her regularly.
13. Tip of the Iceberg
He dated supermodel Gisele Bundchen for three years from 2002 to 2005, forcing Tom Brady to win five Super Bowl rings to compensate.
12. Quintessential Modelizer
In addition to Bundchen, DiCaprio has also dated Naomi Campbell, Helena Christensen, Bijou Phillips, Amber Valetta, Eva Herzigova, Bar Rafaeli, Anne Vyalitsyna, Madalina Ghenea, and Erin Heatherton.
11. Heartthrob woes
DiCaprio was chased through the Louvre by a gaggle of teen girls in 1998.
10. Leo the Prankster
In 2016, Leo spotted his Wolf of Wall Street co-star Jonah Hill on the streets of New York. Leo decided to prank him by running up and pretending to be a crazed fan snapping photographs of Jonah. Jonah looked terrified before he recognized Leo and the two hugged it out.
9. Space Oddity
Leonardo DiCaprio is amongst one of the many celebrities who have signed up with Virgin Galactic for a trip to space and, in 2013, a Russian millionaire paid $1.5 million for the chance to go with him. Hopefully, this maiden voyage turns out better than the last one he took.
DiCaprio has worked with Martin Scorsese on five of his movies; Gangs of New York, The Aviator, The Departed, Shutter Island, and The Wolf of Wall Street, which earned him exactly zero Oscars.
7. Because He’s Grrrrrreat!
In 2010, DiCaprio donated $1,000,000 to the Wildlife Conservation Society at Russia’s tiger summit. Despite multiple plane delays, DiCaprio persisted on making it to the event which prompted Vladimir Putin to describe him as a “real man.” This may have earned him a lifetime’s worth of jealousy from Donald Trump.
6. The Martian
During an environmental panel discussion with President Barack Obama and climate scientist Katharine Hayhoe, DiCaprio casually mentioned that he signed up to go to Mars. Because when you’re Leonardo DiCaprio, having conversations with Barack Obama about your upcoming trip to Mars is just a standard Tuesday.
5. Nic Has a Bone to Pick With Leo
Nicolas Cage once outbid Leonardo DiCaprio for a Mongolian dinosaur skull. For the paltry price of $276,000, the Ghost Rider actor finally won the right to say he got “a-head” of the heartthrob from Titanic.
DiCaprio owns two homes in NYC and one in Los Angeles. He also purchased a significantly-sized island just off the coast of Belize which he plans to transform into an eco-friendly vacation resort.
2. Breaking The Vow
DiCaprio broke his vow of vegetarianism on the set of The Revenant after taking a bite of raw bison’s liver because, if you’re gonna stop being a vegetarian, raw bison liver is the best way to do it.
1. Just Say No
Because he has never done drugs, to prepare for his role in Wolf of Wall Street, he had to speak to a drug expert. The expert’s name may or may not rhyme with Schmindsay Schmohan.
Leo is a legend and now, finally, an Oscar winner, an honor he deserves for his remarkable acting career. And we love him. ‘Cause he’s freaking Leonardo DiCaprio. You can share this with your friends by clicking below!