Actor Leonardo DiCaprio finally won his well-deserved Oscar last Sunday — pleasing millions of fans and critics around the world.
For decades, the 41-year-old actor has been able to shock and surprise his fans with one impressive performance on the big screen after another.
Whether as a supporting actor (What’s Eating Gilbert Grape?) or a leading star (The Aviator, Romeo & Juliet,The Great Gatsby, etc.) Leonardo DiCaprio has never hesitated to deliver his best work regardless of the director placed in the driver’s seat.
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When he took the stage last Sunday to accept his first Oscar, the many-times-nominated actor was able to make every single second count — presenting what could arguably be viewed as one of the most impressive acceptance speeches of all time.
Unlike so many of the other speeches presented during the same ceremony, not a single note of the iconic “Your Time is Up” ceremony music played during Leonardo DiCaprio’s speech. Why? The Revenant actor mastered his time so beautifully by presenting a well-developed, well-rehearsed speech that flowed as smoothly as a well-written poem or heartwarming song… even though his memorable speech did go over the allotted 45-second time limit.
Leo’s full Oscar speech is everything right with life!???? https://t.co/EiAFLFhTZF
— WTNZ (@weteenzuk) February 29, 2016
If you pay close attention to the actual acceptance speech itself, it is almost as if Leonardo DiCaprio follows a specific formula from start to finish that allowed him to hit all of the necessary points and highlights without sounding rushed or leaving any important stone untouched.
He started by paying his respects to the Academy, his fellow nominees, family and friends, as well as his supporting co-star Tom Hardy — all of which are major highlights that are also presented in many other memorable Oscar acceptance speeches.
“Thank you all so very much. Thank you to the Academy. Thank you to all of you in this room. I have to congratulate the other incredible nominees this year. The Revenant was the product of the tireless efforts of an unbelievable cast and crew. First off, to my brother in this endeavor, Mr. Tom Hardy. Tom, your talent on screen can only be surpassed by your friendship off screen … thank you for creating a transcendent cinematic experience. Thank you to everybody at Fox and New Regency … my entire team. I have to thank everyone from the very onset of my career … To my parents; none of this would be possible without you. And to my friends, I love you dearly; you know who you are.”
Perhaps addressing his friends with the blanket statement “I love you dearly, you know who you are” is one of the most efficient ways of saying thanks to friends, colleagues, and even close acquaintances. There have been so many other actors and actresses on the Oscar stage that apparently tried to name off each of their friends individually during their relatively short period of time.
During this year’s broadcast, an added feature of listing the names that the winners wanted to thank on the screen was apparently supposed to relieve some of that burden – making it possible for the award winners to keep their speeches short without risking the overtime music. However, that on-screen list did not stop quite a few of the winners that simply wanted to share those names on stage regardless of the words running across the TV screen at the time.
— Kathryn Browning (@ThatKayBrowning) February 9, 2016
Leonardo DiCaprio did not even bother doing that – something that he very easily could have done. With the vast list of A-list actors, actresses and directors that he has worked with over the years, that particular “Thank You” list may have easily caused the new Oscar winner to exceed his allotted time before he got a chance to present the rest of his well-crafted message.
Once the expressions of gratitude were out of the way, Leonardo shifted the focus of his speech towards the film and the cause that he wanted to promote: climate change awareness. Instead of focusing on both separately — a feat which would have taken much more time to accomplish, Leonardo beautifully delivered a notable speech interwoven with references to both at the same time.
“Making The Revenant was about man’s relationship to the natural world. A world that we collectively felt in 2015 as the hottest year in recorded history. Our production needed to move to the southern tip of this planet just to be able to find snow. Climate change is real, it is happening right now. It is the most urgent threat facing our entire species, and we need to work collectively together and stop procrastinating. We need to support leaders around the world who do not speak for the big polluters, but who speak for all of humanity, for the indigenous people of the world, for the billions and billions of underprivileged people out there who would be most affected by this. For our children’s children, and for those people out there whose voices have been drowned out by the politics of greed. I thank you all for this amazing award tonight. Let us not take this planet for granted. I do not take tonight for granted. Thank you so very much.”
Chances are that this will not be the last acceptance speech that Leonardo DiCaprio gives on the Oscar stage. Now that the Academy has awarded the longtime actor with the “Best Actor” recognition once, his chances of being nominated (and even selected as a winner) again in the future are pretty high. Perhaps Leonardo DiCaprio will become the next Daniel-Day Lewis or Meryl Streep – turning each performance into an Oscar-winning performance with a “King Midas” touch of golden cinema.
However, if it was the last time that Leonardo DiCaprio will win an Oscar, he definitely made his mark with his nearly perfect acceptance speech.
[Image Credit: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images]