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Biography #2 (for Blood Diamond)

Leonardo DiCaprio, a two-time Academy Award nominee, earned his most recent Oscar nod for his portrayal of Howard Hughes in Martin Scorsese's acclaimed 2004 biopic The Aviator. For his performance in that film, DiCaprio also won a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor in a Drama, and received Critics' Choice Award and BAFTA Award nominations. In addition, he was honored with two Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Award nominations, one for Best Actor and another as part of the The Aviator cast, nominated for Best Ensemble. In 2004, DiCaprio was also named the Actor of the Year at the Hollywood Film Festival.

Born in Hollywood, California, DiCaprio started acting at the age of 14. Following small parts on television, commercials and in films, he landed a regular role on the hit sitcom Growing Pains. His breakthrough feature film role came when director Michael Caton-Jones cast him in the coveted role of Tobias Wolff in the screen adaptation of Wolff's autobiographical drama, This Boy's Life, in which DiCaprio starred with Robert De Niro and Ellen Barkin.

DiCaprio then starred with Johnny Depp in 1993's What's Eating Gilbert Grape, garnering his first Oscar and Golden Globe nominations for his performance as a mentally handicapped young man. In addition, he won the National Board of Review Award for Best Supporting Actor and the Los Angeles Film Critics Association's New Generation Award.

In 1995, DiCaprio had starring roles in three very diverse films, beginning with Sam Raimi's Western The Quick and the Dead, with Sharon Stone and Gene Hackman. Continuing to challenge himself, DiCaprio received praise for his performance as drug addict Jim Carroll in the harrowing drama The Basketball Diaries, and then portrayed the disturbed pansexual poet Arthur Rimbaud in Agnieszka Holland's Total Eclipse.

The following year, DiCaprio starred in Baz Luhrmann's contemporary screen adaptation of William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet, for which he won the Best Actor Award at the Berlin International Film Festival. That same year, he joined an all-star ensemble cast, including Meryl Streep, Diane Keaton and Robert De Niro, in Marvin's Room, sharing in a SAG Award nomination for Best Ensemble Cast.

In 1997, DiCaprio starred in the blockbuster Titanic, for which he earned a Golden Globe Award nomination. The film shattered every box office record on its way to winning 11 Oscars, including Best Picture, and is still the top-grossing film of all time. He subsequently played dual roles in The Man in the Iron Mask, and then starred in The Beach and Woody Allen's Celebrity.

DiCaprio gained his third Golden Globe nomination for his portrayal of con man Frank Abagnale in 2002's Catch Me If You Can, directed by Steven Spielberg. Also that year, he starred in the drama Gangs of New York, which marked his first collaboration with director Martin Scorsese. DiCaprio most recently starred in Scorsese's The Departed, with Matt Damon and Jack Nicholson.

Bio courtesy Warner Bros. for "Blood Diamond" (01-Jan-2007)


Biography #3 (for Gangs of New York)

Leonardo DiCaprio was born in Hollywood, California in 1974 and attended Seeds Elementary School at UCLA where he took summer courses in performance art before moving to the Center for Enriched Studies in Los Angeles. After Seeds, Leonardo attended John Marshall High School in Los Feliz where he acted in his first real play, Circus Fantasy.

In 1988, at fourteen, Leonardo began appearing in a series of commercials and educational films. Later that year, he made his television acting debut in the syndicated Saturday morning revival of the classic Lassie. In 1990, after appearing on NBC's daytime drama Santa Barbara, Leonardo was tapped for a bit part on the prime-time series The Outsider. Later that year he became a regular on Parenthood. In 1991, Leonardo was cast for his first feature film, Critters III. Later that year, he was invited to join the cast of the ABC sitcom Growing Pains. Michael Caton-Jones then cast Leonardo in the much sought-after role of Tobias Wolff in his big-screen adaptation of Wolff's best-selling novel This Boy's Life where Leonardo starred alongside Robert De Niro and Ellen Barkin.

In 1993, Swedish director Lasse Hallstrom cast Leonardo in the role of Arnie in the critically acclaimed film What's Eating Gilbert Grape? His performance earned him an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor. He was nineteen years old. In 1995, Leonardo played opposite Sharon Stone and Gene Hackman in Sam Raimi's The Quick and the Dead, and the same year starred in the film adaptation of Jim Carroll's gritty autobiographical memoir The Basketball Diaries. He then played the deeply troubled pan-sexual poet Arthur Rimbaud in Agnieska Holland's film version of Christopher Hampton's play Total Eclipse.

As one half of the star-crossed lovers in Australian director Baz Luhrmann's screen adaption of William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet, Leonardo was paired with Claire Danes. He was also featured the same year as Meryl Streep's delinquent-to-the-point-of-criminal son in Marvin's Room, co-starring Diane Keaton and Robert De Niro. In 1996, Leonardo starred in James Cameron's Academy Award winning film Titanic opposite Kate Winslet.

Next, he starred in The Man in the Iron Mask with Gerard Depardieu, Jeremy Irons and John Malkovich. Leonardo owned the number one box-office position for the better part of 1998 with Titanic and virtually knocked himself out of the top spot with The Man in the Iron Mask. Leonardo then starred in Woody Allen's Celebrity, before beginning production in 1999 on Danny Boyle's screen adaptation of The Beach, the best-selling novel by Alex Garland, which was filmed in Thailand. In addition to Gangs of New York, Leonardo also stars in the December 2002 release Catch Me if You Can directed by Steven Spielberg and co-starring Tom Hanks.

Bio courtesy Miramax for "Gangs of New York" (22-Dec-2002)


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