Leonardo DiCaprio and Tobey Maguire go long back. Both actors started around the same time in Hollywood, looking for their big break and searching for stardom. Many do not know, but it was Leo who approached Tobey for his number while he was shooting for Hot Rod Brown Class. Since then, they became good friends and have maintained their bond. But there was a time when the Spider-Man actor thought that his friend was not serious about his job.
The Titanic actor starred in This Boy’s Life in 1993 along with Robert De Niro. Leo competed with several other actors to land the part.
While Leonardo DiCaprio was zeroed in for the part, Tobey Maguire did not think that he would get it in the first place. In fact, he believed that his friend was not serious about the role and did not appreciate it truly. During an interview with Vanity Fair, he said, “He was doing karate kicks in the hallway. He wasn’t serious at all. Leo says, ‘De Niro . . . wasn’t he in Cape Fear?’ I said, ‘Are you f*cking kidding me, dude?’”
Leonardo DiCaprio defended himself and explained that it was his nonchalant attitude that worked in his favour. He said, “My ignorance, as Tobey says, was a kind of advantage, Anyway, I stood up in front of De Niro really forcefully and I pointed at his face and screamed one of the lines. Then I sat there and waited for some kind of reaction. I remember De Niro had this smirk on his face, like, obviously [he knew] this kid wanted to come in here and show him that he had guts. Everyone started laughing and I said, ‘What? What is it?’ And, well, the cool thing is that I obviously showed him something.” Tobey Maguire might have been right, but it all ended up impressing Robert De Niro!
In another interview with SAG, the Titanic star revealed that his impromptu scene made him nervous in the end. He said, “I remember there was a mustard jar scene, and he had to jam a mustard jar in my eye repeatedly, it was an abuse scene. And the script sort of didn’t call for it, but I got up and he said, ‘Is it empty? Is it empty?’ And I got up and I screamed, ‘No!’ … I screamed in his face, and I sat there with my head looking like a red tomato and everyone started laughing at me. … And I sat there frozen, just thinking, ‘Oh my god, I just screwed this entire opportunity up.’”
So, regardless of what Tobey Maguire thought, Leonardo DiCaprio was actually serious about the job.
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