All Articles Tagged "leonardo dicaprio"
Soap operas are pretty much a dying genre now, but there was a time when daytime television shows were a springboard to launch some of Hollywood’s biggest careers. Don’t think so? Here are 15 stars who got their big break on the soaps.
Brad Pitt may have turned heads as a hitchhiker in the 1991 movie Thelma & Louise, but the future Hollywood hunk began his acting career on daytime television. In 1987, the Curious Case of Benjamin Button actor appeared on two episodes of “Another World” as Chris. Pitt also appeared on an episode of “Growing Pains” that same year. He went on to have a hugely successful career in Hollywood and a successful dating life before settling down with Jennifer Aniston. Although that marriage didn’t work out, Pitt has found happiness with actress Angelina Jolie.
I could say, “I know what you’re thinking, we’re still talking about Django??” But then again, you clicked so you’re probably interested. Though the movie was cast, filmed, put on DVD and Blu-Ray, won a few Academy Awards (including for Best Original Screenplay for Quentin Tarantino), the question was most recently posed by Entertainment Weekly as to why Will Smith, who was one of the first actors Tarantino allegedly met with for the film, passed on the opportunity to play the title character. His decline made room for Academy-Award winner Jamie Foxx to come through and embody (and kill) the role.
According to Shadow And Act, while Smith was a big fan of the screenplay, he once told media that he couldn’t do the film because he was working on Men in Black III, and didn’t have the time to sit with Tarantino to discuss and hash out different issues he had with the movie. However, he went in depth with EW and basically said that Django, despite the title of the movie, wasn’t the lead character. Therefore, Smith wasn’t trying to play second fiddle to anybody, including Christoph Waltz, who of course won an Academy Award for his role as Dr. King Schultz, the Best Supporting Actor role actually:
“Django wasn’t the lead, so it was like, I need to be the lead. The other character was the lead!”
“Smith says that before he left the project, he even pleaded with Tarantino to let Django have a more central role in the story. “I was like, ‘No, Quentin, please, I need to kill the bad guy!’”
“But no hard feelings: Smith was a big fan of the final product. “I thought it was brilliant,” he says. “Just not for me.”
While some would definitely say that Django was the lead, Smith might have a point. And did anybody else notice that come awards time, there really wasn’t much conversation or talk surrounding Foxx (who didn’t pick up any of the big nominations from the Golden Globes, Bafta, Screen Actors Guild or Academy Awards), but rather, just Waltz and Leonardo DiCaprio? But either way, as Smith said, the role of Django just wasn’t working for him, and in the end, the role ended up in the right hands, so clearly there’s no love lost for anybody. But what we can learn from all this is that when it comes to Will Smith, he’s earned leading man status (see those box office numbers) and he’s not taking anything less than that. Not mad at him!
What do you think of Smith’s reasoning behind passing on the movie? Does he make a good point?
Getting a role in any movie is a feat in itself, but there have been several actors who have been given the chance to have two or more roles in one movie. For actors this means double duty, but rarely do they seem to mind the extra work involved. Here are 14 actors who have had two roles in the same movie.
There have been a few African-American musicians who have scored major motion pictures. Some have even won Academy Awards, such as Prince who became the first black winner of Best Original Song Score for 1984′s Purple Rain and Herbie Hancock who became the first black winner of Best Original Score for 1986′s Round Midnight. Now Jay-Z may add composer to his list of music credits.
Hollywood is abuzz with the news that the Jigga will score The Great Gatsby alongside The Bullitts. “Rumors of Jay-Z’s participation with the film started swirling when the first trailer debuted online in May,” reports Billboard. “Director Baz Luhrmann chose Jay-Z and Kanye West’s Watch the Throne track, ‘No Church in the Wild,’ as the music for the film’s trailer.” According to reports, the soundtrack may include songs from a range of artists — from Prince to Lady Gaga. The Great Gatsby, starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Tobey Maguire, and Carey Mulligan, opens on May 10.
There have been many hip-hop artists who have worked on scores for rap features, but Jay-Z may be the first hip-hop artists to score a general audience feature film. Various African-American musicians of other genres have scored feature films, going back to Duke Ellington, who was the first back person to be nominated for Best Original Score for the film Paris Blues in 1961. Other musicians who have scored films and have been nominated for an Oscar include Quincy Jones (In Cold Blood, 1967; The Wiz, 1978; The Color Purple, 1985), Isaac Hayes (Shaft, 1971), and Terence Blanchard, who has scored a number of Spike Lee movies including Malcolm X and When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts, among other movies. The most prolific probably is Jones who has scored more than 50 film projects.
It will be interesting to see if Jay-Z will be nominated — or even win — an Academy Award for his Gatsby composition. ICYMI: The trailer for the film is available on the next page.
‘It Was Really Hard On Jamie And I’: Kerry Washington Admits Challenges Being Whipped And Called The N-Word While Filming ‘Django Unchained’
The lovely Kerry Washington recently visited The Tonight Show with Jay Leno where she discussed some of the challenges faced while filming her latest project, “Django Unchained, which stars the “Scandal” actress and Jamie Foxx,who plays her husband. The film tells the tale of a slave couple who is separated and sold to two different plantations and a husband’s desperate attempt to rescue his wife from the hands of an evil slave owner. The NAACP Image Award-nominated film is said to be extremely graphic at times and provides a true-to-life depiction of what life was really like for the slaves who actually had to live through this era. Kerry expressed that although she respects the authenticity of the movie, she faced some challenges while filming. Check out some of the highlights of her interview.
On the film’s brutal honesty:
“I think it was one of the things that really drew me to the film. I think in a lot of our films, there’s a romanticizing of slavery. If you look at “Gone With The Wind” it was the “good ole days of slavery” when everyone got along, which is not how it really went down.”
On being called the N-word and other vulgar slurs in the film:
“It was really hard to do. I kept telling Quentin [Tarantino] that I was going to send him my extra therapy bills because it was really hard on Jamie and I both. That actually made us feel extra grateful for anybody that was able to survive it because we barely survived it for pretend for the eight months we were filming.
On her “whipping” scene:
I did [get hit with a whip]. We were filming on a slave plantation so it was an archeology site that you knew that these awful crimes against humanity had actually happened. It was a stunt whip but the guys were very reluctant to do it but I thought we are here and we should honor the story that we’re telling and honor the people who lived through this horrible tragedy and try to be as real as possible.”
Kerry did make a great point, slavery has been romanticized by Hollywood on some levels. It was a dreadful era that should never be watered down. Given Tarantino’s real-life depiction, it sounds like it is going to be a great movie.
Check out video of Kerry’s interview on the next page. Will you be going to see “Django Unchained” when it is released later this month?
Jamie, Leo And Kerry Cover VIBE And Talk Early Criticism Of “Django Unchained” By Black Folks And Controversy
Django Unchained hasn’t even come out yet and already it’s got people talking like crazy. Scheduled to be released on Christmas, the film is about a slave named Django who is freed by a bounty hunter who needs his help to hunt down a gang of killers that only Django has seen. If you’ve watched one of the trailers from the film, you probably already know that there will be blood, an inevitable rape scene, and some interesting language. And while Tarantino has won a Screenwriter of the Year award for his storytelling with this film, some people, many of them black, have been critical about the movie, and have been since the year began. In an interview with VIBE, Kerry Washington, Jamie Foxx and Leonardo DiCaprio talked about the controversy surrounding the movie, and why they felt a new take on slavery was so important. Because as Jamie says in the interview, “Every two, three years there is a movie about the holocaust because they want you to remember and they want you to be reminded of what it was. When was the last time you seen a movie about slavery?”
According to VIBE, everyone from actor Nate Parker (who was in the running to play Django) to Tyler Perry and critical folks all over the place seemed a bit troubled about the story and its oh so interesting script, and claimed that slavery was not taken seriously in the film. But the actors say the film is a realistic depiction of slavery based on the research they’ve done, and that Tarantino did massive research on his own to bring some of the biggest atrocities of our nation’s history to light:
LEONARDO DICAPRIO: We knew there was going to be controversy. The question is: What is not a realistic depiction? I would argue that it is. It is Quentin’s re-creation; this character doesn’t exist. There’s nobody that is documented to do what Jamie’s character has done at the time. But the documentaries I saw went even further.
JAMIE FOXX: Put it this way: I completely understand what you’re saying. ‘Cause as black folks we’re always sensitive. As a black person it’s always racial. I come into this place to do a photo shoot and they got Ritz crackers and cheese. I’ll be like, ain’t this a Itchbay. Y’all didn’t know black people was coming. What’s with all this white Isht? By the same token, if there is fried chicken and watermelon I’ll say ain’t this a Itchbay? So, no matter what we do as black people it’s always gonna be that. Every single thing in my life is built around race. I don’t necessarily speak it because you can’t. But the minute I leave my house, I gotta put my other jacket on and say, ‘‘Hey, Thomas, Julian and Greg.” And I gotta be a certain person.
DICAPRIO: Thomas, Julian and Greg?
VIBE: Those are white people.
FOXX: No some of those people are black. But when I get home my other homies are like how was your day? Well, I only had to be white for at least eight hours today, [or] I only had to be white for four hours. Everything we do is that. When you’re talking about the script, of course it’s going to be controversy. I remember talking to Tyler Perry about it. [In Perry's very serious voice] ‘‘Ah man, the script, man. Have you read it?” When I finally read it, I called Tyler and we had a conversation. I said, ‘‘I got a different take on it than you did.” And we shared. And I called Tyler while we were shooting it. I said, ‘‘Do you know that Quentin Tarantino knows all of your Isht on TV. I don’t even watch all of your Isht.” He said, ‘‘Really?” The difference is the Quentin Tarantino Effect. I ran into Spike Lee at the BET Awards. You know Spike, he’ll let you have it whether it’s good, bad or ugly. And he said, ‘‘I’m not going to say anything bad about this film. It looks like y’all are getting it
KERRY WASHINGTON: This is not a doc. This is a Quentin Tarantino film. But I remember there was this one moment in the script where Jamie’s character was put in an awful crazy medieval metal mask. I said, ‘‘That’s some sick thing Quentin thought up.” And when I went to the production office to meet about my wardrobe, I saw into the research office. Twenty photos of real masks like that. It made me sad. I realized as much as my degrees and everything I’ve read on slave narratives [should have informed me], I didn’t even know that they wore masks like that, that people did that to us. It took a Tarantino movie for me to know that that’s not some crazy thing out of his imagination. That’s how it went down.
And speaking of that rape scene I told you about earlier…We all know that Quentin Tarantino can push the envelope like no other, it’s just what he does, and honestly, something he does well. But the actors spoke on the fact that they were like a family on set, and not only could Tarantino trust them to do their best, but they were given the opportunity to speak up when they felt the story should take a different turn, or if they felt the imagery should be toned down for the sake of the audience, especially the black audience:
FOXX: …Every slither of this film, we thought about it. And what was great about Quentin Tarantino is he welcomed our thoughts. And like most directors this is his baby. We had to make sure we were respectful, but we also had to make sure he could trust us. For example, there was a rape scene. Obviously that’s a dynamic moment. Like, I told him, black people watch a movie different that white folks. When you watch Inglourious Basterds, Jewish people have a more quiet response. [Whispers] ‘‘I can’t believe they did that.” When black people don’t like something it’s like: [louder] ‘‘Ay dawg, why Olivia Pope went down like that. That Isht is fucked up.” What I wanted to say and what we all knew was art is one thing and art is an acquired taste.
WASHINGTON: We didn’t want this story to get lost in the art.
FOXX: The way [Django] protected her, I get it. The way Quentin shot the scene still gives you the dynamic of what happened without the graphicness of us, me–Jamie Foxx, Eric Bishop–seeing Kerry Washington. Because there are certain things that we watch as black people that if we don’t agree with it, we not only turn off the movie but we turn off that person. When we feel like the character was compromised by the white establishmen
There are many other interesting tidbits about these actors (some of the best of our generation) and behind the scenes of Django, but you’ll have to check out the full interview at VIBE.com for all that. What do you think of the cover? And, what do you think about the comments made during the interview? Do you plan to check Django Unchained out?
For some actors, being given the chance to star in a film is the dream of a lifetime, though some actors have had the opportunity to play a lead role in a movie and declined the offer. Here are 14 actors who were offered a lead role but said “no thanks!”
A big part of the celebrity world is who’s dating who and while we love knowing the latest flings in Hollywood, let’s go a little bit deeper. After looking at popular celebs, it’s clear that some of them tend to date certain types of people. Here are 15 celebrities who have a specific type.
Prince seems to be attracted to ethnically ambiguous women. Manuela Testolini, Mayte Garcia, and Sheila E. are all hard to look at and determine their true ethnicity.
It’s not every day that a trailer is released for a Quentin Tarantino movie (he’s only directed seven in his long career), let alone one led by our main man Jamie Foxx. But today is that day! We’ve been hearing since last year about Django Unchained, the big names in it (Christopher Waltz, Kerry Washington, Leonardo DiCaprio, etc.) and the story behind it: A shout out to the spaghetti western where man is slave, slave meets bounty hunter, bounty hunter trains slave to find murderous brothers who took his wife, slave gets MAD revenge in the process and possibly freedom. Sounds like something Tarantino would be into right? Well, what about you? The trailer dropped today and it looks mighty interesting! I must say, I like that the director likes to do movies that are odes to different genres (kung fu, blaxploitation, spaghetti westerns, etc.). Plus, we finally get to see Leonardo DiCaprio play something other than the lead, heroic good-guy. Check out the trailer below and let us know what you think!
Will you check this out when in drops in theaters on Christmas?
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For some actors and actresses, its just not enough to own sprawling estates, million-dollar cars and every high end fashion label hot off the runway. For these 7 celebrities, owning property has striked their interest and lead them to purchase some of the most beautiful real estate in the world, tropical islands. When these celebs want some privacy, they don’t hire a team of security guards, they jet off to their 100% private island in the sea. Get ready to be impressed (and Goggle Earth these tropical oasis’s!)