Friday, March 4, 2016
It was. When Julianne Moore read out his name as the year’s Best Actor, a wave of jubilation swept through the actor’s fans all across the country and around the world. He won for his role in The Revenant, a gritty portrayal of a man left for dead in the wilderness of the American frontier. The film itself was up for a whopping total of twelve Academy Awards, winning three—aside from Best Actor, it also won for Best Cinematography and Best Director for Alejandro G. Iñárritu (who won the same award last year for Birdman). The film is based on a historical novel of the same name by Michael Punke, whose position within the U.S. government prevents him from even talking about his book.
DiCaprio has been in the acting game for a long time. He got his start in 1990 at the age of 15 in the short-lived TV series Parenthood, based on the Steve Martin movie of the year before. He also appeared in an episode of Roseanne, and had a recurring role on Growing Pains. He was working his way into film around the same time, getting his break in 1993’s This Boy’s Life (which was also the film debut of Tobey Maguire). Then, later that year, he played the role of Arnie in What’s Eating Gilbert Grape, earning his first Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actor (losing out to Tommy Lee Jones for The Fugitive).
His star would only rise from there as he would go on to participate in a number of high-profile projects. In 1996 he headlined (alongside Claire Danes) Baz Luhrmann’s modern-day adaptation of Shakespeare’s Romeo + Juliet. The following year came perhaps his best-known role, as Jack Dawson in James Cameron’s Titanic. The tale of doomed romance between DiCaprio and Kate Winslet propelled Titanic to a new all-time box office record at the time. From there he went on to work with such famous names as Woody Allen (Celebrity), Martin Scorsese (Gangs of New York), and Steven Spielberg (Catch Me if You Can).
In 2005, eleven years after his first nomination, DiCaprio finally scored a second Oscar nomination, this time for Best Actor, for another Scorsese-helmed feature: The Aviator, a biopic of the eccentric genius Howard Hughes. This time he lost to Jamie Foxx for Ray. He wouldn’t have to wait as long for the next one, as he was nominated again in 2007 for Blood Diamond—that award went to Forest Whitaker for The Last King of Scotland. He wasn’t nominated again until 2014, when he was recognized for The Wolf of Wall Street, and the award went to Matthew McConaughey for Dallas Buyers Club.
And all this is to say nothing of the incredible roles he played that weren’t nominated by the Academy. Leonardo DiCaprio has had quite a varied and interesting acting career, and at just 41, it’s safe to say that moviegoers still have quite a lot to look forward to. SmartBrowse his name on our website for more of his movies, and while you’re there, don’t miss our collection of all this year’s other Academy Award winners.