It has only taken 6 nominations, over a 27-year career, in order for Leonardo DiCaprio to receive an Academy Award. He has worked in a range of films; some have dazed and confused the audience while others have them sitting on the edge of their seats. DiCaprio has worked in almost every genre of film and has pushed them to the limit. So I would like to ask the Academy, "What took you so damn long!?"
The first time I saw DiCaprio in a film I was around 7 or 8 and my grandmother had the Titanic on VHS. After the first encounter with him, I was hooked and had a giant crush on him. (But what 80's or 90's girl didn't?) I had never been more moved by a character than I was by DiCaprio's character Jack Dawson. He seemed so real to me that I cried when he saved Rose. If a 7 or 8-year-old can understand the immense love Jack Dawson had for Rose, then the actor is a genius.
From the moment I saw the Titanic I was determined to watch any movie with DiCaprio in it and I was never disappointed in his performance. I was actually so convinced with his performance in What's Eating Gilbert Grape that, had I not seen Titanic, I would have thought the DiCaprio was actually mentally disabled. There is no other actor that I know, besides Tom Hanks, that has ever depicted a disability part so well. Reading a script is one thing, but to bring it to life with such clarity and realism is another.
Now I know I'm not the only one out there who has been waiting for DiCaprio to finally get his Oscar. The audience during the Oscars even had the "finally!" look on their faces. Almost every actor in the theater was relieved and happy that DiCaprio received the award. If the audience wasn't enough all you have to do is go on the internet. For years, there have been memes of DiCaprio about how he hasn't received an Oscar and how this year he should get one for just how he acts when he doesn't win. DiCaprio was always composed and looked happy for the nominee who won. This attitude didn't change when he won tonight either.
DiCaprio owned the spotlight. Not only did he graciously accept the award but he thanked everyone who had ever helped him during his entire career from the very beginning. And if that wasn't enough he made the remainder of his speech about the effects of global warming and how it affected his filming process for his newest movie The Revenant. DiCaprio is truly a class act and I am so happy to finally receive his award. He has truly earned it.