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Leonardo DiCaprio Almost Missed Out on the Role in ‘Titanic’

James Cameron shared a moment that almost made him reconsider DiCaprio.

As we approach the 25th anniversary of James Cameron’s iconic film Titanic in December, it’s worth noting that a significant part of its enduring success can be attributed to the stellar performances of Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet. However, according to Cameron, the casting of these two almost didn’t happen.

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Reflecting on the making of Titanic in an interview with GQ in anticipation of the anniversary, Cameron recounted a pivotal moment where he almost changed his mind about casting DiCaprio as the lead. DiCaprio was asked to join a screen test with Winslet to assess their compatibility for the romantic roles.

“He came in, he thought it was another meeting to meet Kate,” Cameron recalled. “We’ll just run some lines, and I’ll video it.”

However, DiCaprio seemed hesitant. “You mean I’m reading?…I don’t read,” he responded, mistakenly assuming he didn’t need to audition for the role.

Upon DiCaprio’s reluctance, Cameron promptly thanked him and made to leave. He emphasized to DiCaprio the significance of Titanic in his career and insisted he wouldn’t risk its success with a wrong casting decision.

“So you’re going to read or you’re not going to get the part,” Cameron informed DiCaprio.

Thankfully, DiCaprio relented and agreed to the screen test, where he displayed remarkable talent for the role and undeniable chemistry with Winslet.

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