The Phantom Menace

Why Leonardo DiCaprio Passed on Anakin Skywalker in ‘Star Wars’
Why Leonardo DiCaprio Passed on Anakin Skywalker in ‘Star Wars’
By the year 1999, a time when ‘Star Wars’ devotees waited with bated breath for the triumphant return of their most cherished franchise with not one but three new installments, Leonardo DiCaprio had already done some solid work. He had broken out big as a youngster in role alongside Robert De Niro and Johnny Depp in ‘This Boy’s Life’ and ‘What’s Eating Gilbert Grape,’ respectively. He had proven his chops as an actor with a meaty role in ‘The Basketball Diaries’ and attained full sex-icon status through dreamboat appearances in ‘Romeo + Juliet’ as well as ‘Titanic,’ which also made DiCaprio one of the most highly bankable stars on the planet.