On Sunday night, Leonardo DiCaprio will win his first Oscar for playing Hugh Glass in The Revenant. This isn’t one of those situations where an actor can get onstage and say, “Oh, I didn’t write a speech because I didn’t think this would happen,” because that is not believable in this situation. Matt Damon can get away with not writing a speech. If Matt Damon wins and says, “I am not prepared. I really didn’t think this would happen,” well, I’d believe that.
So, right now, as I type, I suspect DiCaprio is going over the final touches of his speech. (Or drinking whiskey with a model. One of the two is a pretty safe bet.) What will his speech say? He can’t just give the same speech he’s been giving this whole awards season. It has to be special. In our humble best guess, we think Leo’s Oscar acceptance speech will look something like this:
Oh, ho, ho! Well, well, well! [Crowd cheers.] First of all, I’d like to thank The Academy for this tremendous and generous honor. Also, I want to thank my fellow nominees, with a special shout-out to Matt Damon because I didn’t even realize you were nominated until they just read the names. Good for you, man. Where is he? [Points] Hey, The Departed, right? [Damon smiles and mouths, “yep.”]
A lot has been made about the hardships we experienced while filming The Revenant. Was it overblown? Sure. Look, it was cold. The cold would hit you like a thousand knives. [Audience cheers.] But in my experience as an actor, I’d eat a raw bison liver any day over working with Kirk Cameron on Growing Pains. In fact! [DiCaprio pulls out a raw bison liver and take a bite while singing “As Long as We’ve Got Each Other,” the audience goes wild].
That reminds me, I’d like to make a special mention of the great Anthony Hopkins, who paved the way for Oscar-winning actors whose characters ate a liver. Granted, Tony only talked about eating a liver – but first is first and we have to give credit where it’s due. How about a round of applause for Anthony Hopkins? [The audience responds with polite applause as DiCaprio wipes bison liver blood off of his face.]
And I’d be remiss if I didn’t thank my longtime friend who was also nominated for an Academy Award tonight, Kate Winslet. Where is she? There you are. “Fuck you, April.” [Laughs] As you all know, that’s a line from our most famous collaboration together, Revolutionary Road. People will never stop quoting that movie. [Audience starts chanting “Revolutionary Road! Revolutionary Road!”] Now, now, calm down. I get it, but there will be plenty of time to rewatch Revolutionary Road later. [Camera pans to a stone-faced Michael Shannon.]
And finally, I want to thank my friends who have been with me since the beginning. As time went on, we saw less and less of Jay Ferguson and Joshua John Miller, until eventually they became two more faces on the call sheet. It happens sometimes. Friends come in and out of your life-like busboys at a restaurant. I heard Lukas Haas was in The Revenant. Last I heard, R.D. Robb had done some time in director jail and is now doing odd jobs around Hollywood. Tobey and Kevin did get out. And although I haven’t seen them in more than ten years, I know I’ll miss them forever. [Camera pans to a confused looking Tobey Maguire who mouths, “I saw you two hours ago.”]
I never had any friends later on like the ones I had when I was in the Pussy Posse. Jesus, does anyone?
[Orchestra music starts playing. The crowd erupts in a standing ovation. DiCaprio give a peace sign, then takes another bite of raw bison liver and leaves the stage.]
Mike Ryan lives in New York City and has written for The Huffington Post, Wired, Vanity Fair and New York magazine. He is senior entertainment writer at Uproxx. You can contact him directly on Twitter.