Leonardo DiCaprio and Mia Farrow Retiring from Acting

Mia Farrow announced on Twitter “like my buddy Leo I will be retiring from acting indefinitely.” DiCaprio just said he was taking a break from acting.  But Farrow appears to be done for good.

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73 Comments on this Post

  1. rufussondheim

    Well, according to imdb, it looks like she’s been ‘retired’ for two years now.

  2. Leo isn’t taking a break from acting, he is taking a break from chasing after that elusive academy award nomination and award. Harvey Weinstein promised he could get him nominated for Django but it went to Waltz instead.

  3. I love Mia Farrow. Her autobiography “What Falls Away” was one of the most moving books I’ve ever read about a famous person.

    Everybody thought she was a gold digger when she married Frank Sinatra in 1968.

    But when she and Sinatra divorced and he wrote her a check for a million dollars, she never cashed it. And they remained friends throughout his life. That’s CLASSY!

  4. I love Mia, but hasn’t she retired a long time ago?

  5. It’s the Gatsby curse. Mia didn’t appear onscreen for a few years afterward and I guess Leo is aniticipating it might be best to lay low for awhile.

    They both have other interests, so not to worry. Leo will be back for sure, as soon as he gets some age lines in his face.

  6. DiCaprio is a true movie star and solid actor. My personal take, however, is that he is more interested in cultivating a certain image of himself and/or running away from “the other.” He strikes me as someone who wants to be a “grown up,” rather than play one convincingly, because he wants to be in the leagues of the greats, which are the very things that are preventing him from getting there. He looks too much to the past, maybe? Does he take himself too seriosly? Does he need to get over himself? Most of his adult work has not been that impressive. Nothing to scoff at, but just not full potential level. Actors close to his age like Joaquin Phoenix, Ryan Gosling, and even, God help me, James Franco, are turning in raw performances for the ages and/or are quite amazing. Even actors younger than him. I think many of us remember Sasha’s essay on The Master from last Fall. Can’t say he has delivered anything as an adult that would be worthy of such adulation.

    He had a raw energy in his late teens and early twenties that fueled his most interesting work (namely Gilbert Grape, and, Hell, even Romeo + Juliet). Ever since Titanic, he has been compelled to run away from being a Teen Heartthrob. I thought it would end after his respectable collaborations with some of the greatest directors working today. But, by trying “to be” and “running away” from something, he has somehow abandoned what made him truly great to begin with. I hope the time he takes off helps him get back to what made him truly outstanding. There’s a fearlessness missing from him that I enjoyed in his earlier film choices. I really loved that he took on the Candy role, because I thought that would put him on track to greatness. But, for me, it was a misfire. And I *really* wanted to like him in the role. There were those who did, so what do I know? (not much)

    Not sure how he can get back to the standard of his earlier work, but I hope he does. He is a Hollywood Treasure.

  7. SeattleMoviegoer

    Farrow was terrific, of course, in ROSEMARY’S BABY. She should have been nominated for that (but has never received a single nomination). The Oscar should have been hers for PURPLE ROSE OF CAIRO. her run with Woody Allen was amazing.

  8. Gatsby curse? Interesting theory and it just might have a hint of truth…

  9. @steve 50

    I’ll grant you, “The Great Gatsby” wasn’t well received critically when it was first released. But I think time has been kind to this film and it has aged wonderfully. Doesn’t hurt that it was a period piece to begin with.

    I also think Farrow was perfect casting as Daisy Buchanan at the time . . . had the film not been given such a raw deal from the critics, it may well have earned Mia Farrow an Oscar nomination in 1974.

    Surprisingly, Farrow has never been nominated for an Academy Award, despite some wonderful work in “Death on the Nile”, “Radio Days”, “Rosemary’s Baby”, and in particular, “The Purple Rose of Cairo”.

    An Honorary Oscar someday perhaps for this legendary beauty?

  10. I *just* got the Gatsby connection. Thanks Steve50.

    Whenever I think of Mia Farrow, one of the things I am embarrassed to say I think of is the quote she made about her dating post-Woody. Something about having to consider asking her potential suiters if they plan on diddling one of her daughters. It makes me laugh. But, it’s also kind of sad. And weird. And so Hollywood.

  11. I know it has probably nothing to do with his acting break, but does anyone have a viable theory why the Academy keeps ignoring DiCaprio ? He is one of the most consistent actors and Box Office performers in Hollywood, always works with great directors who usually deliver critically acclaimed BO hits, he always gets great reviews yet nothing since 2006 ? And even before that, he had been regularly overlooked.

    With all those iconic/cult-bound films (Gilbert Grape, Romeo + Juliet, Titanic, Gangs of New York, Catch me if you can, The Aviator, The Departed, Inception, Django Unchained) and acclaimed performances (Marvin’s Room, Blood Diamond, Revolutionary Road, Shutter Island, J. Edgar) under his belt, frankly the fact that he hasn’t won isn’t even the most shocking part, it’s that he only received 3 Oscar nominations and not even for his (arguably) best performances (The Departed, Django Unchained, Shutter Island, Revolutionary Road).

    And what makes this whole thing even more baffling that the Academy LOVES his films (66 nominations, 24 wins and counting (Django), 5 BP nominations including 1 win), they just don’t seem to love him all that much. I will be very curious to see how this year will play out: he leads Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby and Martin Scorsese’s The Wolf of Wall Street, so ON PAPER it looks like it could be his year, but then again so did 2002 (Spielberg’s Catch me if you can + Scorsese’s Gangs of New York), 2006 (Zwick’s Blood Diamond + Scorsese’s The Departed) and 2010 (Nolan’s Inception + Scorsese’s Shutter Island)…

  12. Vince, I think his performance was VERY raw and vulnerable in REVOLUTIONARY ROAD, I still don’t know how he didn’t even get a nomination for that one, that was my favorite male performance that year.

  13. SeattleMoviegoer

    i’ve mentioned this before…and apologize for being redundant…but Leo has a good shot at a nom and win if he can pull off his pet project (he optioned the book) of the movie version of DEVIL IN THE WHITE CITY. what a book and what a great film it could be with the right director. at one point Bigelow was attached, then Scorsese, now–up in the air.

  14. Phantom > You zeroed in on the problem. Everything looks good ON PAPER. Great acting leaves the page and becomes something else. He seems to fall short many times. Whether it’s him or his choice of roles or both. Perhaps I should watch Revolutionary Road again. Maybe I just don’t care for his choice of movies. I found most of the movies you listed bland and forgettable. But that’s probably on me.

    Seattle Movie Goer >> If they sift out all of the dense history and make something engaging, I’m all for it. But, that novel put me to sleep. But, yeah, I wouldn’t mind if he keeps playing villains until he hits paydirt.

  15. rufussondheim

    Maybe they don’t like him, phantom. Maybe he’s kind of a dick, maybe he’s bad at small talk at social functions. There are any number of ridiculously plausible explanations, but I will grant you it is curious. Although I’m not 100% that he deserves more than he’s gotten, but then I haven’t seen some of his films and I actively despise some like Inception and Catch Me if You Can. Maybe he’s just seen as a Golden Boy and everything just comes to easy for him and they resent him for that.

    Matt Damon is another actor that seems to get the short shrift, although he does have the screenwriting award, and his resume is not as impressive as DiCaprio’s.

    And Ryan Gosling will be joining this group soon, although it’s easy to explain away people overlooking him because too often he’s got top performances competing against each other.

  16. Some actors just don’t receive Oscars (my avatar is THE prime example). I’m not putting Leo or Mia on the same pedestal as O’Toole, but both have given worthy performances, Rose/Cairo for her and Gilbert Grape for him.

    It will help Leo to disappear for awhile. I’m absolutely certain he’ll be back and blast us away with something. Look what the “comeback” did for Brando and Ingrid Bergman. Hepburn had to disappear for awhile. It will be good for him and good for us and our perception of him.

    Yes to the idea of a special Oscar for Mia, a la Deborah Kerr (another in the same lot). With all her humanitarian efforts, I would have thought she would have been ahead of Oprah in that line.

  17. Bryce Forestieri

    Top 10 Mia Farrow pix ya’ll?!

    I be back shortly with mine!

  18. Danemychal

    It’s overreactionary to say that the Academy has ignored DiCaprio, after all he does have 3 Oscar noms — more than the majority of actors get. But if you think about the number of juicy roles in Hollywood that exist for men vs. juicy roles for women, it’s easier to see how Winslet got nominated for both Titanic and Revolutionary Road while DiCaprio got passed over in favor of better performances. In a movie like Gangs of New York, DDL got the nomination instead because he absolutely owned the movie as Bill the Butcher. And the Academy tends not to nominate him when he plays characters too similar to normal people, as in Inception. Django and The Departed were examples of the ensemble effect diminishing his role. And really, putting Waltz in supporting cost DiCaprio this year.

    I think DiCaprio has two chances to get one with The Wolf on Wall Street and Gatsby next year. The Academy might take the temporary retirement as an opportune moment to recognize him. We shall see.

  19. Oh, Rufus, we’re brothers in arms on Inception (among other films).

    As far a Leo & Oscar, he should have won for Gilbert Grape. And then never been nominated again, except maybe once for The Departed. His accent in Blood Diamond was painful. But, yes, Phantom does point to an active AMPAS “dislike” of him. (Not that I disagree with the “dislike”.) But, I’m not sure that’s the right term.

    If you think about, his Jack Dawson was the same year as Will Hunting. And were the AMPAS really going to nominated two youngins’ in a race full of veterans. So, Titanic? Forget it. Yet, that was his strongest “Best Picture” film in his entire career. They nominated him for The Aviator. And they put him in for Blood Diamond instead of The Departed. Django Unchained was arguable the 9th-lister out of 2012’s lot, barely getting into a Best Picture Field of Ten. (Look at the rest of his nods for further proof) Let’s not forget that he didn’t fully realize the role. (So unintimidating, when we should have feared him, but that was partly the fault of the direction.) And, also, Waltz was committing category fraud, which often serves to an actor’s advantage (Juliet Binoche in The English Patient; Hailee Steinfeld, etc). Revolutionary Road lost major steam by the time nominations rolled around and didn’t do much at the box-office. J. Edgar he was short-listed for, but was he really snubbed? That movie was awful and there was nothing about that performance that suggested great acting. It was Oscar-bait. That’s the best complement you can pay it. Inception was effects and director-driven and there wasn’t anything memorable about his role. Julia Roberts’ seemed to have more sway with her opinions. Gangs of New York he was overshadowed by method-actor Daniel Day-Lewis. And, like Revolutionary Road, Catch Me If You Can lost major steam with Oscar.

    Most of Leo’s “snubs” can be easily explained away. So, do they actively dislike him? I think it’s easy to say they don’t actively love him like Amy Adams. And, there’s a difference. If he actually did something worth nominating, backed by a major Best Picture contender, that made money and had critical approval, and he was still ignored, then I’d say, yes, that would substantiate an active dislike of him.

    Still, he got nominated for Blood Diamond. Blood. Diamond. That suggests something entirely different.

  20. Love Mia. I still think she was an underated muse for Woody Allen….my favorite post-Annie Hall Woody films are Hannah and Her Sisters, Radio Days, Another Woman, Broadway Danny Rose. She gave his films a fragility, and vulnerability. Whatever happened to them in private, Woody brought the best of her as actress. Very underrated.

    I used to dismiss Leo as an adult – I was annoyed by the fact that Scorsese seemed so smitten. I’d loved that early energy, charisma….but somewhere along the line, he seemed to want to mold a certain image – that of the Serious Actor. That’s when he started to seem pretentious. He failed to convince me in Gangs, The Aviator and Hoover…he doesn’t have that kind of versatility, not as a chameleon. But he was great in The Departed and had some spark in DU.

  21. I feel like he’s being a crybaby b/c he did not get an Oscar nomination and that is mind blowing. Maybe that is why he doesn’t get nominated, too much ego? We should all just quit working b/c we don’t get trophies for doing it.

  22. OK Bryce – My top ten of Mia Farrow’s films (it was tough to come up with 10 – 6 was easy, I’m afraid), in order:

    Rosemary’s Baby
    Purple Rose of Cairo
    Guns at Batasi
    Broadway Danny Rose
    Husband and Wives
    Hannah and Her Sisters
    Alice
    Secret Ceremony
    John and Mary
    Crimes and Misdemeanors

  23. Good point, Mel. Many celebrities only see the reflection of the bubble they live in.

    My favorite quote of DiCaprio from the other day:

    “I would like to improve the world a bit. I will fly around the world doing good for the environment”

    I know his intentions are true and you have to look beyond the surface of his words, but the irony that first hits one when reading this can put them in a coma. I mean, really? It’s no where near Tom Cruise-level crazy, but, I mean, really …

  24. daveinprogress

    I’m going to sit in the middle of this debate, as I think he is a 3 time Oscar nominee and has an impressive resume of work. Whether he is aloof or media unfriendly or too rich and good looking to be taken seriously – he is not the only great actor under appreciated. Ryan Gosling, Michael Fassbender, Michael Shannon…. lots more. I love Leo’s work – i love his intensity – in both his early choices (marvin’s Room) or the more recent (Rev Road, Inception, Shutter Island, J Edgar…)

    Amidst the list of films he has already made, he has those 3 oscar noms and multiple Globe noms and you only have to look at his credits to see he gets nominated for something (lots of somethings) for almost everything he has made. Few actors can say that.

    Is he a dick? Probably. But i enjoy the Leo up there on the screen, whether he is playing a somebody or a nobody. He is a true movie star. Maybe he is questioning whether he wants to be that.

  25. daveinprogress

    I would have nominated Mia Farrow for Purple Rose of Cairo, but can’t see her ever getting an Oscar. I just assumed she had already retired.

  26. Mia is just a nice actress.
    She really deserves noms for Rosemary’s Baby and much more fir The Purple Rose of Cairo.
    But she seems to me an actress that, in a certain way, “never happened”. And make that pathetic role as a crazy Woody’s ex-wife…

    Leo is completely brilliant… he’s better every day.
    Very great in Gilbert Grape and Blood Diamond.
    His performances in Revolutionary Road ( I agree Phantom, he’s simply terrific in RR, his eyes in his last scene is priceless and heartbreaking…), Inception and Sutter Island could easily be nominated. And I’m not talking about J. Edgard and Django Unchained.
    More than everything, all he does in The Aviator is so great, deep and perfect that I make he a legend. His performance in The Aviator is one of greatest performances if decade. Everything is in its right place. I will never understand how that limited and little actor called Jamie Foxx could win that just for use all mimesis in the world. A real shame…
    Leo is, no doubt, a underrated actor!
    I really hope Academy make justice to him as soon as possible. And the fil basead in one my favorite novels, from one my favorite authors, The Great Gatsby, coyld be the perfect moment… Crossing fingers…

  27. The guy went from Django to Gatsby to Wolf of Wall Street right after another. And from what I hear, Django was a very long and tough shoot. Who wouldn’t want to take a little time off after working that much. The guy’s burnt out. Nothin wrong with that.

  28. So agree with Vince, Leo’s adult performances have mostly suffered from overacting or trying too hard. Most of them are fine, actually (I don’t blame him for J. Edgar), but never as amazing as you just know he wants them to be. He was very convincing in Django and it was one of his best performances in years. I would have been happy if he were nominated over, say, Arkin. But the character wasn’t that compelling, especially next to Waltz (blame Tarantino if you want).

    He was over-the-top — and so was our dear Kate — in Revolutionary Road.

    He should have won for Gilbert Grape.

  29. Clearly he is a divisive actor, I simply think his filmography is remarkably impressive and don’t understand how he never even came close to winning an Oscar when actors like Roberto Benigni, Adrien Brody, Forest Whitaker, Jean Dujardin can just waltz in and win one for their first (and (arguably) to date last) good/great performance. I know it isn’t a career award and it should go to THE best performance of the category, but frankly I don’t think that was the case in those years : Benigni won over McKellen (Gods & Monsters) and Hanks (Saving Private Ryan); Brody over Day-Lewis (Gangs of New York), Nicholson (About Schmidt) and Cage (Adaptation); Whitaker over O’Toole (Venus) and Gosling (Half Nelson); Dujardin over Clooney (The Descendants), Pitt (Moneyball) and Oldman (Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy). The only one of these victories I can agree with is Forest Whitaker (although I rooted for O’Toole and considered Gosling the best), that’s why it is so frustrating that he hasn’t done anything noteworthy ever since.

    Back to DiCaprio, I guess its the classic poster boy curse, the Academy doesn’t seem to be capable of taking former teen idols seriously even if they have decade(s) of good/great work behind them. That would explain why Brad Pitt (Golden Globe for Twelve Monkeys) and Johnny Depp (SAG (!) for Pirates of the Caribbean) have never won, Ryan Gosling (The Believer, Lars & the Real Girl, Blue Valentine, Drive) and Leonardo DiCaprio (Shutter Island, Revolutionar Road, Django Unchained) usually have a tough time getting nominated let alone win, and none of Ben Affleck‘s three highly acclaimed directing achievements managed to impress the Academy that much, they did snub his individual work on all three occasions, though they always nominated one of his actors because Amy Ryan, Jeremy Renner and Alan Arkin clearly directed themselves to Oscar-worthy performances.

  30. In short, I just got the sense Leo ticked people off with some sort of attitude problem–I just don’t think it runs as deep (any bad feelings) or as long term as it might have with other actor/actresses (see bios of Vanessa Redgrave for case example of actors who have ticked people off in a major way).

    So I don’t think he has angered anyone in some long term way. He got as many nominations as he did (and might) because he’s just that talented despite whatever pouting fits he might have had….

    Best wishes to Mia Farrow….

  31. rufussondheim

    So you really think that he deserved to win over Ralph Fiennes in Schindler’s List?

    My favorite early performance of his is in Total Eclipse, but then I liked that movie more than the average joe.

    I think Mia Farrow was better than Geraldine Page.

  32. Leo can’t shake off his boyishness, he was 70 years old in J. Edgar but still seemed like a kid in full old man makeup and costume trick-or-treating on Halloween (OK, the makeup & hair team were largely at fault). The dedication and effort are palpable but it always ends up like he’s too young for the role.

  33. I would give DiCaprio the Oscar over Fiennes. It wouldn’t have been an easy choice, but DiCaprio’s work in Gilbert Grape was transcendental. Fiennes was quite good and it was a killer role, but there were moments I wasn’t watching the performance but Fiennes “acting.” In Grape, there was never one point where I saw through the cracks. His performance was effortless, uninhibited, and one for the books. Perhaps he was too young to care, which is what made him so excellent. Great performance, great movie. Juliette Lewis should have also been nominated.

  34. Yeah, Armie Hammer’s “old face” was pretty bad. And Naomi Watts didn’t get out unscathed either.

  35. Phantom > The aforementioned winning over more worthier performances doesn’t justify Leo not having an Oscar.

    If you want to talk about “like” factor, let’s talk Tilda Swinton. She won partly because of luck. She just happened to land a choice role in a movie that just happened to get major Oscar attention (which, correct me if I’m wrong, wasn’t exactly the genre of film to usually get such attention) in a year that her category was uncompetitive. It was solid performance, but Tilda Swinton winning Oscar was truly a fluke … a fluke I welcomed with open arms.

    But, if the AMPAS really liked her, I mean, really, really liked her, she would have been nominated at least three other times. And, frankly, she should have been nominated and won her Julia over Streep’s Julia.

    And Imelda Staunton should have won for Vera Drake.

    And Emily Watson should have won for Hilary & Jackie …

    And, and, and, and …

    Can you honestly say that Leo has done anything in the last ten years that has lived up to Joaquin Phoenix or Heath Ledger at their best? Phoenix in The Master and Ledger in The Dark Knight were truly remarkable performances. Had Phoenix been overlooked for The Master, I would definitely say the AMPAS had a bone to pick with him. But, DiCaprio … he has been treated pretty fairly, I’d say. Though, I do wish he had won for Gilbert Grape. Hindsight is 20/20.

  36. alan of montreal

    I wouldn’t say there was a “Gatsby curse” that affected Mia Farrow’s career. Sure, she never got a nomination, but she’s had a very healthy career, and well into middle age when roles often become much more scarce for women once they reach 40. I think we have to get over the idea that the Oscar is the be all and end all of an actor’s career. It’s a nice thing to have, but Maureen O’Hara never got one, and she’s been in some classic films, and until Myrna Loy got her honorary Oscar, she’d never even been nominated, yet she’s a name we all know and recognize from the Golden Era of Hollywood.

    As for Leo, he’s definitely put in solid work over the years, but I think it’s been difficult for him to stand out either because of the films he’s appeared in or because he still carries some baggage from his youth or because he’s still not the most memorable thing about the film or because of the competition he’s up against. I think people are still waiting for his “iconic” role (and Jack from Titanic definitely does not count). I actually found him to be weak in Revolutionary Road–it felt to me as if he was actually younger than Kate Winslet in that film. I also think it was just too melodramatic a film overall, and not in a good Far From Heaven kind of way, either–it was terribly directed and scripted, to the extent that at the screening I was at, there was consistent laughter among the audience because of the dialogue and rather hammy acting, save for Michael Shannon. I think that Leo was actually miscast–it just felt too anachronistic. I haven’t seen Django, but from the trailers he does look amazing in it, and certainly more interesting than Waltz, but perhaps in a film that toyed with stereotypes and cliches the audience felt that he was too cliche (plus he played the villain in a film about race–speaking of which, no one seems to be talking about Samuel L. Jackson getting robbed). In any case, I doubt that it’s the lack of awards recognition that is behind his break from acting; more likely it has to do with the more activist filmmaking he’s been doing around environmental issues that’s drawing his attention away. I bet you it’s probably it’s a motivating factor for Farrow, as well, as she’s also been quite active in UN issues, though age may obviously play a big role, too.

  37. Bryce Forestieri

    @steve50

    Yeah for some reason I thought it’d be easier, how embarrassing lol

  38. Yeah, right. That’s y’know, like me saying I’m retiring from blogging.

  39. Vince

    I see what you mean when you talk about the overacting/tryingtoohard etc. and it probably applies to the big Oscar-bait performances, still, I do consider those STRONG performances, calculated sure, but still very powerful and clearly ones that required hard work and devotion. I also think his Revolutionary Road turn should have won him the Oscar in The Wrestler/Milk year, and I wouldn’t have even hesitated to vote for him instead of the winner that year Tommy Lee Jones (The Fugitive). Granted, Ralph Fiennes was great in Schindler’s List, but he was in great company so he couldn’t really steal the show, not in my opinion, meanwhile DiCaprio owned What’s eating Gilbert Grape. He was truly memorable.

  40. I was watching an old Roseanne last weekend and Leo was a kid in Becky’s Home Ec. class. He didn’t have a single line. Just sat next to her smiling. I was dyin.

  41. I meant to say Darlene. Not that it matters. It was pretty funny though.

  42. Mickey Rourke was devastating in The Wrestler. He got my vote. Sean Penn was great too, but the script’s maudlin hero worship finale and Van Sant’s sanctimonious direction helped me give the edge to Rourke. Poor guy should have won. Outstanding film too.

    Now that I think about it, Milk’s lame climax made me realize that Lincoln’s wasn’t so awful.

  43. Darlene was in Home Ec? She must have gotten in trouble or there was a scheduling mishap.

  44. The Japanese Viewer

    The title photos shown here sure are but ones taken in their younger days (well, if we’re discussing the very same Ms. Farrow….). Not that I mind it or anything in main, though.

    In my opinion, DiCaprio’s doing PR stunt here. [I didn’t read others’ comments but I wouldn’t be surprised if anyone would say the same.] Perhaps selflessly for Django the flick or just for kicks; or genuinely in want of a relatively long vacation following, correct me if I am wrong, three pieces in two years recently…(talking about millionaire’s Spartan life). : )

    I’m not following Farrow’s thesp efforts. But I understand that, to be blunt, she’s already been in a certain age of sort so the notion of retirement for a more peaceful life is not a strange island to me. Or is it PR stunt as well???

    Merci for the snippet, Sasha. [A break from AD’s own recurring civil war — anything Lincoln — methinks, eh? xD]

  45. Darlene was in Home Ec? She must have gotten in trouble or there was a scheduling mishap.

    Ha. Back then you had to take it if you were a girl! Darlene wasn’t half the little butch lesbian I was and even *I* had to take it! I’m pretty positive they don’t make girls take home ec and boys take shop anymore, do they? I definitely don’t think they spank asses anymore. I graduated HS in 92 and though that feels like yesterday I was told this year that it’s been 20 years since then so I suppose I’m a bit out of touch with what school is like today.

  46. 92 hs grad here also. Everyone had to take shop in the 7th grade for a quarter. I think Home Ec was voluntary for girls, but I might be wrong. (I was one of the few guys who took it, and that was by choice.)

  47. That’s why I put The Wrestler first and Milk second, even though Penn won that year. I think Rourke deserved it the most from the final 5, but I firmly believe DiCaprio’s performance in Revolutionary Road was remarkable, emotionally raw and truly heartbreaking, so if he had been nominated, I would have voted for him. I am not a big fan of these recent Sean Penn Oscars, I think his best work was in Dead Man Walking, I firmly believe there were considerably better performances in 2003 and especially in 2008. Come to think of it, I think he would have been my #5 in both years. It’s weird to realize that he has as many Best Actors Oscars as Daniel Day-Lewis…and one more than Laurence Olivier. And for films like Mystic River and Milk, anyway it might just be me, but I consider those OK films and OK performances, definitely not BEST of the year or anything like that.

  48. DiCaprio just doesn’t do it for me. I think he’s a film snob in a bad way – he only takes on lofty, awardsy dramas that are, collectively, depressing.

    I think He would kill in a romantic comedy. He might also try playing a non-miserable gay man. Or Someone cool like who gosling played in crazy stupid love. but I think he’s so afraid of playing femme or vain or weasley. I think that might be too close to the bone.

  49. It is a pity that Mia Farrow retires Oscar-nominationless.

    Jennifer Hudson has an Oscar.

  50. julian the emperor

    The supporting actor race of 1993 was a REALLY tough year. What a great bunch of performances, I like all of them (which happens rarely, the best actress race of 2010 another exception with Portman, Bening, Kidman, Lawrence, Williams).
    Lee Jones won for probably the least impressive perf of the bunch, but it is very convincing still. Postlethwaite, DiCaprio, Malkovich and, of course, Fiennes deliver on a very high level. Any of those five perfs deserved to win, really.

    I cannot understand why people would think of DiCaprio as being neglected by the Academy. He received nominations for rather bad work in mediocre films like The Aviator and Blood Diamond. Admittedly, failing to nominate him for Django seems a bit odd considering what a big star he is (besides the fact that Waltz won so recently). Had DiCaprio been nominated (and it must have been a close call) he would have been a favorite to win, up against four previous winners…there is a short way from failure to triumph, indeed…

  51. The Japanese Viewer

    I re*d some of the most recent comments. Someone’s just made some interesting observation [no sarcasm…].

    I enjoyed Blood Diamond (etc.). And DiCaprio wore so well the character of White African blood diamond trader born to a white farming family […] opposite the equally brilliant Djimon Hounsou’s illiterate, humble fisherman. Referring to another reader’s interesting observation, I wonder if DiCaprio would be able to pull off a […] gay man; I need to see it to believe it.

    In my opinion, something in Blood Diamond or Django vein should not do any harm; or even a womanizer of sort in a so-called chick flick, or some Tribeca-Wall Street suit, good or bad a la Wall Street’s Michael Douglas. Granted this comment, to be honest, was random; so, I might change my mind if convinced.

    But I’d also like to see him in a Woody Allen-directed film (this part, not random).

  52. The truth of the matter? Leo isn’t that good of an actor. Compounding matters – he TRIES so damn hard. Not only in the Oscar-baity roles he picks, but in the actual performances – the tension, the struggle for emotion. If he would just relax, enjoy himself, and not try to be a great actor for the ages (he doesn’t have the talent) – he might stumble into a role and a performance that would actually move people.

  53. You people obviously don’t know jack shit about what makes a good performance if you’re calling Leo a bad or even mediocre actor. When something like that is taking place, you know this site has been overrun by the snobbiest of film snob.

    It’s not the truth of the matter. And guess what? His performances move plenty of people. The Academy is notorious for snubbing pretty boys no matter how good they are.

  54. Django was the first time he matched his perfs in The Aviator, Catch Me, and Blood Diamond. His snub was made more egregious when you consider all of the nominees are all old and all previous winners.

  55. julian the emperor

    tr:

    Please notice that I didn’t call Leo a bad actor, I referred to two of his Academy-nominated performances as “rather bad”, perhaps because they took place in movies that I didn’t appreciate at all. I mean, even Daniel Day-Lewis looked quite bad in Nine, after all, didn’t he?

    Leo is a commendable actor with a fine cv. I don’t find him intuitively gifted as an actor, but he is putting a lot of effort into his roles (sometimes that shows, in a bad way, because you can see the workmanship at play rather than pure intuition). But I would never call him a bad actor as such. Just to clarify.

  56. julian the emperor

    Besides, I referred to his work in What’s Eating Gilbert Grape as one of a bunch of five (best supporting actor of 1993) of the very highest order. That’s not exactly bashing him, is it?

  57. Film Fatale

    Sorry, Sean Penn was correctly awarded the Oscar for Milk over Rourke. There was nothing “lame” or “maudlin” or ” sanctimonious” about the picture or direction. Look at Penn in Mystic River and then Milk, then make a case for how he didn’t deserve the Oscar — because it isn’t possible. Rourke was quite good but playing that broken down character looking for redemption was perhaps not a huge stretch.

  58. Penn deservedly won for Milk. On the other hand, his performance in Mystic River is a classic example of overacting.

  59. No, Milk getting shot while looking out over the city in disbelief while an opera played was not maudlin at all. My bad.

  60. Unlikely hood

    I dont think Leo cares about the oscars. This is just a negotiation. So next time someone offers him a script he can demand more$.

  61. The Dude

    Di Caprio is certainly a very good actor, but he seems to take himself too seriously, and is almost always choosing roles with very few humor; if you look at the last best leading and supporting actors winners, they were all in roles that made you laugh at least a little, even if they were terrifying, like the Joker or Idi Amin.

    It’s good he took a more humorous role in Django, he’s very good in this sort of roles (see Catch Me If You Can), hope he continues to do so.

    “Penn deservedly won for Milk. On the other hand, his performance in Mystic River is a classic example of overacting.”

    This is a classic example of bullshit. He has one “BIG” scene, and that’s where he finds out his daughter dies. Most of the time his performance is very reserved.

  62. Mia Farrow, another great not even nominated.

    Arguably, she should have won for Alice back in 1990. She won the National Board of Review. The Julia Roberts Pretty Woman nomination over Farrow was a joke. I would have given it to Anjelica Huston for The Grifters, with Farrow a close second (I love Kathy Bates, but she overracted in the bad Misery…she should have been nominated for a more restrained and moving performance in Dolores Claiborne), and arguably should have won Supporting for About Schmidt (certainly not Zeta-Jones in Chicago!).

    She also should have been nominated for Rosemary’s Baby back in 1968, and that film should have been nominated for Best Picture. That was the year Oliver! won and 2001: A Space Odyssey wasn’t even nominated. Wow. At Sight & Sound, 2001 finished #6 at the Critics’ poll and #2 at the Director’s poll, so there’s some revenge.

    Farrow arguably also should have been nominated for Broadway Danny Rose back in 1984, the year the farm ladies dominated. Farrow was a breath of fresh air and elevated Rose beyond shtick.

    Finally, people talk about Farrow being nominated or even winning for The Purple Rose of Cairo. I don’t know, that’s a tough one. She was terrific, but what a year for lead actresses. Among those not nominated with Farrow were Norma Aleandro for The Official Story (NY Film Critics Best Actress – remember, there were very few precursors back in 1985), Vanessa Redgrave for Wetherby (National Society Film Crix Best Actress), Kathleen Turner in Prizzi’s Honor (Golden Globe for comedy) and, most notoriously (though not necessarily egregiously), Cher for Mask. Among the nominees, I still don’t understand how the great Anne Bancroft was nominated for Agnes of God. The other four nominees are all also strong: Meryl Streep in Out of Africa (one of her very best if you ask me; really moving), Whoopi Goldberg in The Color Purple, Jessica Lange in Sweet Dreams, and winner Geraldine Page for The Trip to Bountiful. There was no denying Geraldine on nomination #8, but had she won for Summer and Smoke or Sweet Bird of Youth or Interiors or one of her supporting nods, she might not even have been nominated for Bountiful (though she was very fine indeed!). So Farrow as the best of 1985? Not in my book, just too much competition. Purple Rose is pretty revered among Woody Allen films. I’m not really sure why. The idea was ingenious, but it was borrowed from Buster Keaton’s masterpiece Sherlock Jr. The execution to me was fun but nothing extraordinary.

    In any event, as usual the Oscars got it wrong, and Mia Farrow will retire without a nomination, in some very good company, including Marilyn Monroe (not even for Some Like It Hot??), Myrna Loy (though do we count her 1934 write-in votes for The Thin Man? perhaps we do, since Bette Davis came in 3rd place with write-ins for Of Human Bondage, a performance that Life Magazine then called the greatest ever, yet not even nominated due to studio politics), Ida Lupino (NY Film Crix Best Actress for The Hard Way in 1943), Jean Harlow, Rita Hayworth (how could they not nominate her for Gilda??), many many more.

  63. “Alice” is another gem of a performance from Mia Farrow that I failed to mention earlier. Check out this little seen Woody Allen film sometime. It’s really quite wonderful. And Mia is wonderful in it.

    Interestingly, she seemed to really shine in films where Woody Allen was directing (and not starring) – a la “The Purple Rose of Cairo”, “Alice”, and “Radio Days”.

    Every once in a while I get a jolt when reading people’s blogs on this site: i.e., Jennifer Hudson has an Oscar. Mia Farrow has never been nominated.

    It does make you wonder about Oscar selections sometimes, doesn’t it?

    Another egregious Oscar selection (in my opinion)? Sandra Bullock. Julianne Moore and Glenn Close are Oscarless (puts it into perspective, n’est ce pas?)

  64. OK I double checked the Leo interview and it’s a translated foreign interview so maybe it wasn’t as dramatic as it’s coming across. He could have meant he is just taking a vacation. He needs to relax from always chasing the Oscar gold it will happen eventually. Leo is way more talented than George ‘playing myself always’ Clooney who already has one. Maybe they are just waiting for him to get some grey in his hair and lose the baby face. Meanwhile the dude can kick back, enjoy his riches, his access to quality movie roles and ability to get any big breasted and long legged 22 year old Victoria Secrets model he wants.

  65. I agree with the comments that Leo just tries too damn hard. He really strains and it’s obvious in Django Unchained, though everyone considers him to be snubbed for that. I think he’s fine in Catch Me if You Can and Gilbert Grape, even if I don’t think those movies are that great, and I like a lot of the movies he’s made, even if I think he’s often miscast in them. But my god is he smart to exclusively choose top-notch directors, but I’d like to see him do something a bit less polished, a bit riskier.

    As far as Mia Farrow, it is a damn shame she didn’t get nominated. I think her best performance was in Broadway Danny Ros, maybe because it was so unexpected of her.

  66. I can’t wait for the new “The Great Gatsby” to come out directed by Baz Luhrmann. It looks visually stunning.

    I think Carey Mulligan was an inspired casting choice for Daisy Buchanan (not so good . . Tobey McGuire as Tom). Leo as Gatsby? mmmmm . . . could be good; could be yucky. Wait and see.

  67. I remember Brad Pitt saying the same thing a few times.

  68. It’s all about timing.
    Sometimes you’re nominated more than once and never win, sometimes you win with only one nom. When you hit the right time or just not.
    Most times good performances don’t get nominated.

    I loved Farrow in The Purple Rose of Cairo (the ending is so heart breaking) and admired her in “Rosemary’s Baby”. Sad she never hit the right time and I’m really wondering why she never did!

  69. I have adored Mia Farrow for almost 50 years, since Peyton Place. As Keifer mentioned, her autobiography What Falls Away is absolutely wonderful. The best autobiography of an actor I’ve ever read. My favorite performance of hers is in a movie very few people saw–Reckless from 1995 with Tony Goldwyn. And she is so very good in Rosemary’s Baby, Purple Rose of Cairo, and Broadway Danny Rose and so many other films. She was an absolutely perfect Daisy Buchanan. She is most deserving of an honorary Oscar.

    I don’t find Leo to be a particularly compelling actor. Far more talented actors have never won an Oscar, and he’s been nominated 3 times. So it’s not like the Academy has overlooked him.

  70. His “long break” is at most a few months, because this summer he plans to shoot The Devil in the White Night. Heard it here first.

  71. @JJ – I agree with you. I firmly believe DiCaprio should have played in romantic comedies. He would have been amazing and would have been getting awful lots of awards. He simply does not have the drama character especially with that childish look.

  72. Film Fatale

    Vince, do you know what “maudlin” means — it means awkward or unnecessary sentiment, usually unearned.

    Beaches is maudlin. Steel Magnolias is somewhat maudlin.

    Milk is most definitely not maudlin.

    Get over it.

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