Poor Leonardo DiCaprio. He’s a multi-millionaire, has dated some of the most beautiful women in the world, and every director, from Martin Scorsese to Quentin Tarantino, wants to work with him. But he’s never won an Oscar, so his life is incomplete. DiCaprio’s been nominated four times — for What’s Eating Gilbert Grape, The Aviator, Blood Diamond, and The Wolf of Wall Street — but he and Amy Poehler are always the bridesmaid, never the bride.
And boy does he want an Academy Award for his work in Alejandro G. Iñárritu’s follow-up to the Best Picture-winning Birdman, The Revenant, calling it “the most difficult film, I think, that any of us have ever done.”
He’s doubling down on the difficulty.
In a previous interview, DiCaprio said, “I can name 30 or 40 sequences that were some of the most difficult things I’ve ever had to do. Whether it’s going in and out of frozen rivers, or sleeping in animal carcasses, or what I ate on set. [I was] enduring freezing cold and possible hypothermia constantly.”
You think that’s difficult? Try watching The Beach.
The Revenant, which also stars Tom Hardy, was screened for critics in Los Angeles for the first time this week; reviews are still embargoed, but Vulture’s Kyle Buchanan praised DiCaprio’s performance, writing that he “fully commits to [the role], delivering a spittle-speckled, blood-soaked revenge turn that successfully exterminates every last vestige of his teen-dream twinkdom.”
It’s an especially weak year for Best Actor nominees — Leo’s only real competition is Michael Fassbender for Steve Jobs and maybe Eddie Redmayne for The Danish Girl — so if he’s ever going to win his long-desired Oscar, now’s the time. Make sure to thank the bison whose liver you ate, Leo.