To speak of Leonardo DiCaprio is to mention great Hollywood film productions such as Titanic -the most awarded and nominated film in the history of the Oscars-, his eccentric romances with well-known women in the acting guild and even his continuous activism for the rights of the community. LGBT+.
Despite this, the beginning of his career was also full of controversy, despite the fact that thanks to his great talent he quickly positioned himself as one of the promises within the seventh art and over time he has shown it in more than one film.or The Man in the Iron Mask, Blood Diamond and The Revenant, a film that gave him his first and only Oscar at the 88th Academy Awards ceremony.
Even without knowing it, many years ago, when he was just a young artist, the actor was already so coveted by production houses, directors and big franchises to the point that at some point in his nascent career he said “no” to one of the companies largest and most important children’s entertainment in the world: Disney. This is the story of when Leonardo DiCaprio was about to star in one of the most important movies in the history of the most famous mouse house in the world for a large financial sum, but he rejected it.
DiCaprio had started his career in the early 1990s, appearing in television commercials that are currently viral on the internet, due to the great success he now has. He also came to act in recurring roles in television series such as Santa Bárbara and Growing Problems, very popular in the American region but without great international significance like other television projects in the United States.
He made his film debut in the science fiction and horror comedy Critters 3: You Are What They Eat (in Spanish, Critters 3: Eres lo que comen), also known in Argentina as Critters 3: se comen todo! and in Mexico as Critters 3: Los engendros made in 1991 -it was directed by Kristine Peterson; It is the third film of the Critters saga- and thanks to that he had a very important exposure in the American Union because many actors recognized his talent and the directors saw in him a diamond in the rough.
In this way, a great job offer came to the actor from the person in charge of great classics in the history of children’s animation such as Pirates of the Caribbean -saga of the beloved Jack Sparrow played by Johnny Depp-, The Lion King and Snow White and the Seven dwarfs: star in one of the new bets that the house of the mouse had in a somewhat unknown genre for them, a horror musical.
The film would be Hocus Pocus (titled Abracadabra in Latin America and The Return of the Witches in Spain) an American film from 1993, which is officially considered to be a Horror comedy, directed by Kenny Ortega and starring Bette Midler, Kathy Najimy, Sarah Jessica Parker, Omri Katz, Thora Birch and Vinessa Shaw, which was released on July 16, 1993 in the United States.
The biggest fans of this production, which is already a classic on Halloween, probably know it, but many others do not. DiCaprio almost played beloved Max. The Inception actor later revealed how much Disney wanted to hire him. However, money does not buy everything although many think so, because although it is commonly said that not even love, although in this case it could be “it does not even buy DiCaprio”.
In 1993 he focused on filming his breakout role in What’s Eating Gilbert Grape opposite Johnny Depp, by Swedish director Lasse Hallström, which cemented Johnny Depp’s fame and catapulted the young Leonardo, who garnered Oscar and Golden Globe nominations as Best Supporting Actor for his portrayal of a mentally handicapped teenager; Based on the novel What’s Eating Gilbert Grape by writer Peter Hedges, he adapted the screenplay for the film.
That is why the actor did not enter the Hocus Pocus movie – the public would never have met his Arnie Grape. However, DiCaprio admitted that he was offered “more money than I ever dreamed” according to the popular magazine Variety a few years ago.
The star of the Titanic did not reveal how much Disney offered him, but based on his statements and the golden age of the producer, it can be assumed that it was a lot. The film alone grossed around $44 million at the box office. But DiCaprio wasn’t focused on financial gain.
“I don’t know where the hell I got the courage from. You live in an environment where you are influenced by people who tell you to make a lot of money and strike while the iron is hot. But if there’s one thing I’m very proud of, it’s being a young man who stood his ground.” expressed to the medium.
At that time, having said “no” to Disney was very questionable because although DiCaprio already had a potential career on the rise, many knew, especially critics and the specialized press in the seventh art, that being young and working in the house of the mouse was the ideal and proven springboard by predisposition for anyone with dreams of greatness in acting to achieve their goal.
For many fans, DiCaprio’s physique in that year was ideal, because his beauty and especially his peculiar straight blonde hair would have been ideal with the character of Max, because that is how the other actor we all know represented him in the final version of said production. . Although he would not exist, the idea of seeing Leonardo making some kind of special appearance in the already confirmed second part would be a dream for those who wanted to see him in his first installment.
Hocus Pocus 2
A few years ago, plans for a sequel to Hocus Pocus began and by 2014, with several stars expressing interest in reprising their roles in the sequel, the movement for it gathered impressive momentum, especially as the funniest time in year for many -Halloween- is approaching.
A remake of the original film written by Scarlett Lacey was in development in 2017. A Hocus Pocus sequel was confirmed to be in development in 2019, with D’Angelo set to pen the script. Adam Shankman was hired to direct the film in March 2020 before being replaced by Fletcher in April 2021.
After all these changes and contributions to make things happen, production was scheduled to start in the summer of 2021, in Salem, Massachusetts, but finally began on October 18, 2021 in Providence, Rhode Island, possibly because of the pandemic of COVID-19 dictated the new ways of doing everything in any walk of life. Finally the film will premiere on Disney + on September 30, 2022.