The 88th Academy Awards are happening this Sunday, February 28th, and as we gear up to see who is wearing what on the Red Carpet (and let’s not forget the mani cam) we are heading into this ceremony with one major question: WILL LEO FINALLY WIN HIS FIRST OSCAR?!
Leonardo DiCaprio is nominated for Best Actor this year for his performance in The Revenant. This nomination marks his fifth time being considered for an Oscar in a time span of over 20 years (the first nomination was Best Supporting Actor for What’s Eating Gilbert Grape in 1994.) Since then, he’s been nominated for The Aviator, Blood Diamond, and The Wolf of Wall Street. While he’s won a handful of Golden Globes and other notable awards, he has yet to take home that special golden statue.
Of course, there are many celebrities who deserve awards and don’t always receive them, but Leo has been waiting for two decades now, and he keeps coming back year after year with impressive and influential performances. Of anyone, Leo is probably the most humble – he’d probably rather someone donate $40K to a wildlife charity than give him a gold statue, but we think that it’s time his craft is recognized by the Academy. Plus, think of the online reaction. The Internet will literally break if he wins his first Oscar this Sunday.
To showcase our support for Leo, we’ve put together 8 reasons why our favorite 90’s heartthrob turned seasoned actor deserves an Academy Award:
1. He survived the child star curse.
So many child actors drift away from stardom later in life, but Leo persevered. His talent was obvious when he was a young’n on Growing Pains, and as he aged, he only got better, and better, and better at acting.
2. He made us love Shakespeare.
Our 9th grade teachers must have been thrilled when their classes were so happy to be reading Romeo & Juliet. Truthfully, we were just hoping that our teachers would show the Leo / Claire movie in class, so we’d have an excuse to watch him yell and cry and shout, “I defy you stars!”
3. Titanic. (No other wording necessary.)
We’re still bitter about the fact that Leo didn’t get a nomination for his role as Jack Dawson in Titanic – and Kate Winslet did. He froze to death, for crying out loud. “You jump, I jump,” remember?
4. He made a killer comeback.
The years between 1998 and 2002 were dark ones, because we didn’t have a big Leo movie to look forward to. Sure, there was Celebrity and also The Beach, but neither of those could compare to the epic nature of Catch Me If You Can and Gangs of New York, both of which were released in 2002. We like to think of those two movies as the dawn of the “adult” years for Leo, when it was solidified that he was here to stay.
5. He makes unlikeable characters somehow lovable.
Frank Wheeler of Revolutionary Road? Kind of despicable. Jay Gatsby? Totally nuts. Jordan Belfort in Wolf of Wall Street? We wouldn’t want to be married to him! Yet there’s something about Leo that makes these loathsome characters so interesting, and we can’t help but love them anyway.
6. He forced us to use our brains a lot while watching Inception.
It takes a lot of mental capacity to understand the plot of Inception, but we did it for Leo. A dream within a dream within a dream within a dream? What? How does that even make sense? But with Leo explaining it, it somehow becomes clear, and we’re willing to suspend all sorts of disbelief to go on that journey with him.
7. Leo completely disappears into his characters.
Of course, a part of us will always think of him as Jack Dawson or Romeo Montague, but one of the greatest things about Leo is the way he is able to completely transform into his roles, changing everything from his appearance to his voice to his mannerisms. Think about his portrayal of Howard Hughes or J. Edgar Hoover.
8. And lastly– he fought a bear in the revenant.
And won. And stitched himself up. And survived in the snow. And fell out of a tree. And climbed into a dead horse’s body.
Guys, it’s time.
Tell Us: Do you love Leonardo DiCaprio too? Why does he deserve an Oscar?