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Leonardo DiCaprio turned down Boogie Nights to make Titanic

Leonardo DiCaprio nearly took the leading role in Paul Thomas Anderson's '90s movie Boogie Nights, but he decided to star in Titanic instead

Leonardo DiCaprio as Jack in Titanic

Leonardo DiCaprio is one of the most famous actors on the planet, and he pretty much has the ‘90s movie Titanic to thank for his sterling reputation. The James Cameron disaster movie put a young DiCaprio on the map in Hollywood, but he had to turn down a role in the Paul Thomas Anderson movie Boogie Nights in order to star in Titanic.

DiCaprio starred opposite Kate Winslet in the epic romance movie Titanic, which at the time became the highest grossing movie of all time. Even now, despite the influx of MCU movies, Titanic still sits in third place as one of the most successful films of all time. It’s safe to say Leo’s career would probably be very different without the cultural impact of Titanic.

Well, in an interview with GQ from way back in 2008, DiCaprio gave a little insight into the alternate path he very nearly took back in the ’90s. Turns out, he was offered the leading role in the independent drama movie Boogie Nights at the same time as Titanic, and had a choice to make.

When asked if there are any roles he regrets turning down in his career, DiCaprio replied: “Sure. Boogie Nights is a movie I loved and I wish I would’ve done.” He then revealed that he turned down Boogie Nights in favour of the blockbuster movie based on a true story.

DiCaprio then faced the ultimate question, if he could turn back time and change that decision, would he? Well, the star had a very diplomatic answer to that conundrum.

“I’m not saying I would have. But it would have been a different direction, careerwise. I think they’re both great and wish I could have done them both,” DiCaprio said. “The truth is, if I’d not done Titanic, I wouldn’t be able to do the types of movies or have the career I have now,” he added.

For more nostalgia hits, check out our list of the best 2000s movies. Or, for another megastar, take a look at our list of the best Tom Cruise movies.