Full/Alt. names:Leo DiCaprio, Leonardo Wilhelm DiCaprio
Birth Name :Leonardo Wilhelm DiCaprio
Date of Birth:Monday November 11 1974
Birth Place :Hollywood, California, USA
Famous as :Actor
Nickname:Leo Lenny D
Awards: Won 1 Golden Globe, 3 Oscar, 2 BAFTA nominations
The Nineties saw the rise of some big, big stars. At different points Brad Pitt, Nicolas Cage, Jim Carrey, Will Smith and Adam Sandler stormed the Hollywood firmament, each other them carrying a string of massive hits. But none of them enjoyed (endured?) the kind of enormo-fame achieved by Leonardo DiCaprio. Beginning the decade as a heavily tipped newcomer, he ended it with Titanic, the biggest hit in cinema history, and a worldwide army of teenage fans so crazed and committed to their idol they had critics recalling the manic days of Beatlemania.
He was born Leonardo Wilhelm DiCaprio on the 11th of November, 1974, in Hollywood, to Italian-American comic distributor George DiCaprio and his German-American wife Irmalin, a legal secretary who'd go on to become Leonardo's manager. The boy's unusual name was chosen when he kicked his pregnant mother from the inside while she was viewing a Da Vinci in the Uffizi, the Wilhelm coming from a German relative - and not some dubious tribute to the Kaiser.
George and Irmalin would divorce the year after Leonardo's birth but, the split being amicable, the pair would both be involved in the child's rearing. Hence young Leo would enjoy a peculiarly bohemian upbringing (not unlike Winona Ryder's). George being a prime mover in the comic underground of the Sixties and Seventies, visitors to the family home included Robert Crumb, Charles Bukowski and Hubert Selby Jr. The family would knock up outrageous costumes and attend numerous Californian festivals, one of Leo's earliest memories being of tap-dancing onstage in front of an audience of thousands - his stage fright thus being eliminated at a very early age.