With both the Olympics and the Academy Awards coming up, it is time to finally recognize the athletic accomplishments of a man who has been a bridesmaid at the latter and a non-participant at the former: Leonardo DiCaprio, nominated for an Oscar this year for his torturous turn in The Revenant. While DiCaprio is well known as a heartthrob and as a dramatic actor, he is not especially famed for his physicality. “The Leonardo DiCapri-Olympics,” a video essay by Nelson Carvajal, aims to change that by spotlighting the numerous moments in which the actor commands the screen not with words but with actions. The essay ultimately argues that DiCaprio has been a de facto action star for decades, though he is not typically classified as such.
Not only that, but he’s truly a multi-sport athlete, like Bo Jackson. Over the course of his long and successful film career, DiCaprio’s characters have attempted such dangerous endeavors as bear wrestling (The Revenant, obviously), underwater kissing (Romeo + Juliet), De Niro dueling (This Boy’s Life), the ever-popular Quaalude crawling (The Wolf Of Wall Street), and bullet taking (Django Unchained). As the video demonstrates, DiCaprio is a born champion in that last event, scoring an easy gold medal. He is less successful, however, in sinking-ship escaping, the designated event from Titanic. At best, he has to settle for the dreaded bronze medal there, and that’s an event where only gold will do.