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LEONARDO DI CAPRIO from childhood to Hollywood superstar

September 2nd, 2008

Full Name: Leonardo Wilhelm DiCaprio
Birth Date: November 11, 1974.
Nationality: American
Birth Place: Hollywood, CA, USA
Education: Corinne A. Seeds University Elementary School in Los Angeles, CA
Center for Enriched Studies in Los Angeles, CA, John Marshall High School in L.A., CA
Religion: Catholic
Occupation: Actor
Claim to fame: as Toby in This Boy’s Life (1993)

This Hollywood superstar with Italian and German roots has really amazing list of roles in numerous blockbusters like “Titanic”, “The Aviator”, “Catch me if you can”, “Gangs of the New York”, “The Beach” etc. I am sure that most of you watched mentioned movies, but do you know how Leonardo became movie superstar? Where did he come from and what did he do before it was revealed that he is talented actor? I tried to collect most interesting facts about his life, and I am sure that his childhood pictures are the most attractive from all celebrity pictures on this site until now.

  • Leonardo was born in Los Angeles, California, as the only child of Irmelin (née Indenbirken), who is a former legal secretary, and George DiCaprio, an underground comic artist and producer of comic books.
  • DiCaprio’s parents met while attending college together and subsequently moved to Los Angeles.
  • His mother moved from Oer-Erkenschwick, Germany, to the U.S. during her childhood, while his father is a fourth-generation American of half Italian and half German descent.
  • He was named after artist Leonardo da Vinci, as his pregnant mother was standing in front of a da Vinci painting at a museum in Italy when Leo first kicked.
  • His parents divorced when he was one. He lived mostly with his mother, although his father was around intermittently.
  • His height is 6′ 1″ (1.85 m), and his nicknames are Leo and Lenny D
  • During his childhood, he attended Seeds Elementary School. At that tim he was mostly interested in baseball cards, comic books and frequently visited museums, with his father.
  • DiCaprio and his mother lived in several neighborhoods, such as Echo Park, then a particularly seedy, drug-dominated area of Los Angeles.
  • During his teen years, he lived at 1874 Hillhurst Avenue, Los Feliz district of Los Angeles, California (which was later converted into a local public library) and his mother worked several jobs to support them.
  • Leonardo graduated from John Marshall High School a few blocks away, after attending the Los Angeles Center for Enriched Studies for four years.
  • After his divorce, his father married Peggy Ann Farrar, who had a son called Adam Farrar, another actor/producer who became Leo’s stepbrother and who inspired DiCaprio to become an actor.
  • At the age of five he appeared on his favorite TV show “Romper Room” and was nearly thrown off for misbehaving.
  • DiCaprio began looking for an agent at the age of twelve, but was initially turned down several times; one agent suggested that he anglicize his name to “Lenny Williams”, which DiCaprio rejected.
  • Leo Attended the same high school as Bo Barrett, Heidi Fleiss, Anne-Marie Johnson, and Julie Newmar.
  • Robert De Niro and Jack Nicholson are his favorite actors, and Martin Scorsese is his favorite director.
  • After a string of commercials, educational films (“Mickey’s Safety Club”), occasional parts in TV series, a debut film role as Josh in Critters 3 (1991), a continuing role as the homeless boy Luke in the TV series “Growing Pains” (1985), he got his break-through part as Toby in This Boy’s Life (1993), co-starring with Robert De Niro and Ellen Barkin.
  • His good friends are Mark Wahlberg., Lukas Haas, Kevin Connolly and Vincent Gallo.
  • His favorite food is pasta. His favorite drink is lemonade.
  • He purchased a 104-acre island off the coast of Belize in 2005 and plans to develop a resort with renewable energy sources. Purchase price for the island, Blackadore Caye, was estimated to be $1.75 million.
  • Originally offered the role of Dirk Diggler in Boogie Nights (1997), but turned it down to do Titanic.
  • On the set of Titanic, DiCaprio’s pet lizard was run over by a truck, but with some TLC, Leo nursed him to health.
  • Bought an apartment in Riverhouse, an eco-friendly building overlooking the Hudson River.
  • Has offered a $20,000 reward for the return of a camera he lost in a Los Angeles’ nightclub, prompting speculation over what kind of pictures the camera contained.
  • He most relevant relationships are with: Bar Rafael (Israeli model; dating in 2006), Gisele Bundchen (Brazilian model; born on July 20, 1980; broke up in 2005), Vanessa Hayden (model; dated in 1998), Kristen Zang (model; born on June 22, 1974; 1996-1997).
  • Good friends with Kate Winslet. They remain firm friends after starring together in Titanic. They chat often on the phone and give each other advice.
  • According to Russell Crowe, Leo often complained about being a virgin while they were filming Quick And The Dead. Leo was 17 at the time.
  • Was inspired to make global-warming documentary The 11th Hour by Al Gore’s efforts on environmental issues when he was the U.S. vice president in the early 1990s.
  • He is an environmental conservationist and often advocates and supports natural causes.
  • ˝Adopted˝ a little girl he met while filming Blood Diamond in South Africa. The child will not live with him, but DiCaprio will be funding her expenses and making telephone calls to check her well being.
  • He suffered a minor leg injury while filming Blood Diamond in Mozambique, Africa.
  • Leonardo has made a large but unspecified donation to UNICEF for tsunami relief efforts in Thailand, where he spent four months shooting the 2000 movie The Beach.
  • While filming The Beachoff the coast of Thailand, Leonardo and others were swept off a camera boat by strong winds and waves. No one was injured.
  • He’s been spotted out together with Demi Moore at numerous Los Angeles nightspots.
  • Is begging his father to leave his motorbike in his garage after he was knocked off his chopper and nearly killed in a recent accident.
  • He got an unexpected greeting while shooting The Departed next to a strip club, when an excited group of strippers hunted him down.
  • Has filed a police report over an attack at a Hollywood party which left him needing 12 stitches in his neck.
  • Helped environmentalists launch an international campaign to draw attention to the hundreds of millions of people worldwide who don’t have access to clean
    water.
  • Has the best cheeks among male celebrities, according to an annual survey conducted by the Beverly Hills Institute For Aesthetic And Reconstructive Surgery in Los Angeles.
  • Turned down the part of Robin in Batman Forever (1995).
  • Says he practiced his losing smile for the 2005 Oscars because he knew he wouldn’t win the Best Actor trophy for his role in The Aviator.
  • In January 1999, his lawyers filed an application to allow DiCaprio to copyright his own name.
  • His line «I’m the king of the world!» in the film Titanic is dubbed the cheesiest line in movie history.
  • Sues Playgirl over plans to publish pictures, including full frontal nudity, of himself.
  • Miramax Films has avoided having DiCaprio compete with himself by moving the release date of Gangs Of New York to December 20 — the Martin Scorsese epic initially was scheduled to open on Christmas Day, when it would have competed with another DiCaprio film, DreamWorks’ Catch me if you can.
  • He delivered an early present to President Bush: an invitation to attend the Earth Summit in Johannesburg, South Africa, at the end of August 2002.
  • Police found a photograph of DiCaprio with his arms around two 20-year-old Brazilian call-girls, who charge $90 per hour for sex, when they searched a Parisian flat of two men suspected of running a prostitution ring — However, police state DiCaprio did not know the girls were prostitutes, and did not pay them for sex.
  • The move from “star” to “superstar” came when DiCaprio played Jack Dawson in the 1997 blockbuster Titanic, along side Kate Winslet as Rose DeWitt Bukater, which soon became the highest grossing film of all time and received stunning 11 Oscars.

Leonardo with family.

Little Leo with mom and grandma.

Leo with his mom Irmelin.

With his grand parents.

Leo´s friends.

With mom again.

Most interesting personal quotes:
I don’t really have many extravagances. I don’t fly private jets and I don’t have bodyguards and I don’t buy crazy things. I have a couple of houses here and there. I bought a very expensive

watch, and I am going to buy a really expensive movie poster, the original for The Thief of Bagdad (1940). I love movie posters.

On turning 30: “I kind of feel like the same person except more time has gone by. I hate to say that I feel like an adult now. I have to admit I wish I was still 18. After all, even through the time while I was representing that wild kid, I really wasn’t. I was just living my life. I was just not making movies at the time.”

I lived in Hollywood and, ironically, I didn’t know you could just go out and get an agent and go on auditions and try and become an actor, I thought it was like a Masonic thing, like a blood line you had to belong to – until I was 12. Then I realised what you had to do. It is the one thing I know I want to do for the rest of my life.

My first date was with a girl named Cessi. We’d had a beautiful relationship over the phone all summer long. Then she came home and we met to go out for the first time to the movies. When I saw her I was petrified. I couldn’t even look her in the eye to talk to her.

I don’t know if I’m ever getting married. I’m probably not going to get married unless I live with somebody for 10 or 20 years. But these people took a chance and they did it. We don’t have the guts that Romeo did.

As a little kid growing up in Hollywood, I was called ‘a little crazy’. And now I guess I’m still that way.

I cheated a lot, because I just couldn’t sit and do homework. I usually sat next to someone extremely smart.

I’m not really the quiet type, although some people think I am. But I’m the rebel type in the sense that I don’t think I’m like everyone else. I try to be an individual.

I like to help the whales, the otters, and the dolphins. When I’m acting and I take a break, the first thing on my list is spending time by the sea.
My mom and I lived at Hollywood and Western, a drug-dealer and prostitute corner. It was pretty terrifying.

I got beat up a lot. I saw people have sex in the alleys. I remember I was 5 years old, and this guy with a trench coat, needle
s and crack cornered me. Early on, seeing the devastation on my block, seeing heroin addicts, made me think twice about ever getting involved in drugs. It’s evil. Once you take that step and experiment, drugs can take over your life. You are not yourself anymore. That’s something I never wanted. I didn’t have a lot of friends growing up. It was kind of just me and my parents. But because of them, the neighborhood did not have a bad effect on me. My dad introduced me to artists, and every few months we’d go to some hippie doo-dah parade as Mudmen in our underwear, carrying sticks and covered in mud. My mother did everything to get me into the best schools she could find.

When I was young, I used to have this thing where I wanted to see everything. I used to think, ‘How can I die without seeing every inch of this world?’

On his life: “What I would do in order to be popular was, I’d put myself on line and joke around and be funny, and I was always known as the crazy kid.”
On love: I like girls who are intelligent, somewhat funny, and pretty with a nice personality.
Dark green is my favorite color. It’s the color of nature and the color of money and the color of moss!

I’m not really the quiet type, although some people think I am. But I’m the rebel type in the sense that I don’t think I’m like everyone else. I try to be an individual.

I’m absolutely clean. I’ve never tried anything. That’s not a lie!

I don’t have emotions about a lot of things. I rarely get angry, I rarely cry. I guess I do get excited a lot, but I don’t get sad and enormously happy. I think a lot of people who talk about all that crap are lying. Right now I’m just trying to maintain happiness – that’s all I really care about. Anyway, when you’re my age and your hormones are kicking in, there’s not much besides sex that’s on your mind.

I hate speaking in front of a large audience. I don’t know where it came from…but its just this gut-wrenching fear of slipping up and doing something horrible.

One of my passions is to meet people and then imitate them. I love doing that.

It’s tricky stuff. If you’re not perfect in every film, then people say ‘see, he was just lucky in one role’.
Everywhere I go, somebody is staring at me. I don’t know if people are staring because they recognize me or because they think I’m a weirdo.

If you hear of any incident about me – a fight, a change of clothes, a little extra gel in the hair, don’t believe it till you talk to me.

Fame is not the worst thing. I went to dinner the other night, and the girls in the restaurant ignored me. It was so annoying.

If you can do what you do best and be happy, you’re further along in life than most people.
The main thing for me right now is just to live my life with my family and friends. They treat me like Leo, not ‘Leonardo, Master Thespian’. That’s all I need to keep my sanity.

The last thing I want to turn into is a fat Hollywood jerk. I was brought up without much money and I was happy. I don’t think that I will strive for money or success and end up greedy or big-headed. That only leads to unhappiness. I can still be down-to-earth and do this job as long as I enjoy it.
On success: “I’ve just been jolting along from one film to another. . . . Now, it’s sort of a shock to realize what I’ve achieved.”

Portraying emotionally ill characters gives me the chance to really act.

I’m just starting to scratch the surface of what makes me happy, and it has taken me a while to admit that acting like a child and a jerk is fun.

On acting: “Don’t think for a moment that I’m really like any of the characters I play. That’s why it’s called acting.”

A consensus has emerged in our scientific community that global warming is no longer merely a theory but a reality, a crisis with truly global implications for planet Earth and all of us who share it. – Told to thousands at the New Jersey concert for Live Earth

Filed under: Celebrities Then And Now | Tags: , | 1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (8 votes, average: 4.75)
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Comments:

  1. Loran says:

    I am totally ecstatically crazy about LEONARDO DiCAPRIO!!!
    I want to marry him!!!!

  2. costume spiderman says:

    Hi, I’m visit your web site with my I phone. You have a actually good desgin and interest post. At home I’m going to add you to my rss reader, didn’t mess that up.

  3. rachael says:

    leonardo kinda look like jesse nccartneyand they are both cute

  4. nogafolo says:

    hi,,,,,Leonardo>>your childhood was is very beauty..I’d like to visit you in your country.i come from Indonesian especially in Flores island .i really like with your movies.could you please to send your address to me by my face book?/

  5. Rian says:

    Leonardo DiCaprio ;

    Your my favorite actor no doubt! Your amazing and i absolutely love you! Your childhood was beautiful and so are you(: I hope i can become famous one day and meet you!

  6. I love being me says:

    Duude, Leo is just leo :L Im pretty sure he always gets people saying ‘Oh Leonardo, i’m your biggest fan!’ and idk about him, but if i were an actress hearing that all the time would be quite awkwardly annoying. xD Like, yeah, he has the talent. He is very talented but at the end of the day, he’s just human ;3 If you are reading this comment and thinking ‘This girl is mad. she probably hates Leonardo DiCaprio’ , you are certainly wrong. I think he’s a very talented person, and he’s done many good things in life, such as adopting that kid in africa, and caring so much about the environment. For most celebs, the environment is the last thing on their mind, most celebs like ordering authentic furcoats etc… but Leo’s different- he’s trying to stop all this, and its working well. What he does for savetigersnow.com is just amazing.
    Also, no offence to whoever made this, but its a bit stalkerish on how much research you do on Leo… if i were in his position, i’d be rather creeped out.
    I hope my comment doesnt uh… put any of you off or anything, but
    ‘I love leonardo dicaprio!!! i want to marry him!!’ Give the guy some space :L
    Sorry if i’ve offended any of you.. ;L that was not my intention.

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Celebrities Then And Now(c) is a site dedicated to interesting pictures, facts and news about celebrities when they were young and today. On our site you will find everything you`d like to know about celebrities in high school, and generally through their childhood and about their way to success. If you have pictures or articles that you think would be interesting for us and our site feel free to e-mail your suggestions.

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