Brad Pitt, Robert Downey Jr, Johnny Depp, and even our Inside Film favourite Bill Murray, are just a few of countless examples of superstar actors who have, surprisingly, never won an Oscar.
However, none ever seemed more surprising than the case of Leonardo DiCaprio, possibly the most “A-list” one of all. In recent years, the capture of “Leo” as your lead or supporting actor almost guaranteed Box Office success. His four film partnership with master director Martin Scorsese has provided some of the most complete pictures of the last two decades.
The Aviator picked up five Oscars in 2004, whilst the Departed took four in 2007. He was the main event of the $160 million dollar blockbuster Inception, which also won four Oscars. The joint highest academy award winning film in one year, Titanic, which took eleven, co-starred DiCaprio in what once was the highest grossing film of all time, second only to Avatar.
Yet, as we all know, DiCaprio has not managed to pick up an Oscar for himself, and that has slowly become a somewhat begrudgingly, accepted reality. Speaking to Deadline.com before the 89th Academy Awards, DiCaprio said that “As you know my friend, no one knows what is going to happen. Everyone has their predictions about everything. I’ve no expectations whatsoever for anything or anyone. All I am doing at this point is doing my best to showcase a project I love very dearly and am very proud of.”
No one ever really expected Leonardo to win Best Lead when he was nominated in 2014, yet everyone was rooting for him when the award eventually went to Matthew McConaughey for Dallas Buyers Club.
Despite his countlessly diverse roles, undeniable popularity and an ability to be an absolute box-office smash hit, DiCaprio appears to be no closer to making his acceptance speech to the academy. Moreover, his recent announcements to take a “long, long break” from acting, after filming the Great Gatsby, Django Unchained and the Wolf of Wall Street back to back threatens any opportunity of academy award nominations, of which he has only ever had four, in the near future. His last substantial hiatus lasted over two years and DiCaprio has given very little to indicate when he will return to the screen.
However, with Scorsese remaining precautious over details of a Frank Sinatra biopic, which may or may not be coming sooner than we originally thought, it has become a widespread assumption that DiCaprio will take the lead on a sixth collaboration. Biopics have long since been seen as an actor’s easiest way to win the award, a recent example being Jamie Foxx taking the Best Actor award for Ray in 2004.
So, perhaps it may still be a case of when, rather than if, Leonardo DiCaprio finally wins an Academy Award. DiCaprio said in 2014 that “I don’t feel like I deserve anything but it feels good to just be in the conversation and have your peers say, ‘OK, this is at least worth talking about’. “ Though in hindsight, does Leonardo even need the award in the first place? He may not have been officially recognized by the Academy, but that does not mean DiCaprio still has anything to prove. Not to his fans at least, who to them – the longer Leo goes on without winning an Oscar, the less significant every past Oscar winner becomes.
Keep smiling Leo!