Monday, February 21, 2011

Do Oscar Voters Really Hate Leonardo DiCaprio?

Leonardo DiCaprio gets great roles from top directors, so why do Oscar people hate him?
—Cay, via the inbox
It's true that Martin Scorsese is a huge fan (the two just announced another team-up, The Wolf of Wall Street). And it's true that Leo is absent from this year's Oscar ballot.
But do you think that a vote for, say, Forest Whitaker (who killed it in 2006's The Last King of Scotland) meant "hate" for DiCaprio? I think I hear your mom calling.
Now, let the adults sort out Leo's awards season woes:
VOTE: Take our Oscar prediction quiz
Because even if Oscar voters don't "hate" Leo—and, really, grow up—they sure haven't voted for him.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences has nominated him three times, for Blood Diamond, The Aviator and as a supporting actor in What's Eating Gilbert Grape. No statuette.
So why has he never won? And why no nominations for Shutter Island, Catch Me If You Can, Gangs of New York, Romeo + Juliet, The Basketball Diaries, Revolutionary Road, Inception? (I refuse to say Titanic.)
"Poor Leo has had lousy Oscar luck," says Tom O'Neil, who heads the awards-race blog Gold Derby. "He would've won four years ago if he'd been nominated for the right film, but he had two rival roles in the running and he got nominated for wrong one—Blood Diamond.
"It's his own fault," O'Neil explains. "If he'd agreed to campaign in lead for The Departed instead of supporting, he would've been nominated for that instead and probably would've won, riding its Best Picture sweep."

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