/ : Leonardo DiCaprio /


Birth Name: Leonardo Wilhelm DiCaprio
Birthdate: November 11, 1974
Birthplace: Los Angeles, CA
Occupation: Actor
Quote: "All you math teachers who've been scolding me all my life, ha ha! I laugh." --New York Times, December 12, 1993
 
Leonardo Dicaprio Photo
 
 

Claim to Fame: Played Luke, a homeless boy, on sitcom Growing Pains

Significant Other(s):
Gisele Bundchen, model; brazilian; reportedly dating as of spring 2000
Vanessa Hayden, model; dated briefly 1998
Kristen Zang, model; dated 1996-97

Family:
Father: George DiCaprio, comic-book distributor; divorced from Leo's mother
Mother: Irmeline DiCaprio (née Idenbirkin), former legal secretary; divorced
Stepmother: professional body builder
Stepbrother: Adam Farrar, actor; born 1971

Biography
This tall, slender, boyishly handsome young actor proved engaging in TV family sitcoms (e.g., "Growing Pains") and endured a cheapie horror sequel ("Critters 3" 1991) before triumphing as Tobias Wolff in "This Boy's Life" (1993), a 1950s coming-of-age with an explosive domestic setting. While earning the lion's share of praise and virtually stealing the picture from established co-stars Robert De Niro and Ellen Barkin, DiCaprio was merely warming up. Later that year, he downplayed his handsomeness and undertook the role of the mentally challenged but cheerful younger brother of Johnny Depp's title character in "What's Eating Gilbert Grape". At age 19, he scored strong reviews and snagged a Best Supporting Actor Oscar nomination.

DiCaprio added another exceedingly stylish genre film to his resume with a supporting role opposite Sharon Stone in the delirious meta-Western "The Quick and the Dead" (1995). He brought verve and cynicism to his portrayal of the Kid, a cocksure young gunslinger who may be the son of villain Gene Hackman. He veered back to the margins to star in the long-awaited (and profoundly disappointing) adaptation of "The Basketball Diaries" (also 1995), Jim Carroll's gritty memoirs of a youth that incorporated good grades, local basketball stardom and heroin addiction. DiCaprio won praise for his highly emotional performance but the film was deemed aimless, shallow and routine.

Courting the art-house crowd, the actor portrayed French poet and arrogant, self-styled "genius" Arthur Rimbaud in "Total Eclipse" (1995), a psychological drama that traced the complex and exceedingly unpleasant homosexual relationship between Rimbaud and his older mentor, Paul Verlaine, while failing to deal with their art. A critical and commercial flop, the film marked DiCaprio's first unqualified disaster but later found an audience in its video release (no doubt in part because of its nude scenes). Further stretching his talents, DiCaprio undertook the role of Romeo to Claire Danes' Juliet in the bizarre, modern-dress take of "William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet" (1995). The young actor once again proved his dramatic mettle amidst heavyweights like Meryl Streep and Diane Keaton in "Marvin's Room" (also 1995) before landing the role of the plucky artist who wins a last-minute passage on "Titanic" (1997). In James Cameron's Oscar-winning blockbuster, DiCaprio and co-star Kate Winslet anchored the film, turning what many felt was a poorly-written love story and making it come alive for audiences around the world. Following on the heels of his Romeo, this performance solidified the young actor's stature as a heartthrob with his slyly wicked dual turn in "The Man in the Iron Mask" (1998) further adding to his reputation.

Filmography
Celebrities: Caught On Camera (2001)
Don's Plum (2001)
Gangs Of New York (2001)
The Concert For New York City (2001)
The Beach (2000)
The Man in the Iron Mask (1998)
Celebrity (1998)
Leonardo DiCaprio: In His Own Words (1998)
Leonardo DiCaprio: The Interviews I (1998)
Leonardo DiCaprio: The Interviews II (1998)
Titanic (1997)
Marvin's Room (1996)
William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet (1996)
The Quick and the Dead (1995)
Les Cent et une Nuits de Simon Cinema (1995)
The Basketball Diaries (1995)
Total Eclipse (1995)
This Boy's Life (1993)
What's Eating Gilbert Grape (1993)
Poison Ivy (1992)
Critters 3 (1991)
 

Awards:
1993: National Board of Review: Best Supporting Actor, What's Eating Gilbert Grape
1993: Los Angeles Film Critics: New Generation Award, This Boy's Life and What's Eating Gilbert Grape?
1997: Berlin Film Festival Silver Bear: Best Actor, William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet
1997: MTV Movie Award: Best Male Performance, Titanic

Factoids:
DiCaprio's parents gave him his first name because he kicked from the womb as they viewed a da Vinci painting in Italy

Education:
Center for Enriched Studies, Los Angeles, California
John Marshall High School, Los Angeles, California

Agency:
Creative Artists Agency

 


 

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