In his new movie, The Great Gatsby, Leonardo DiCaprio is the love-stricken Jay Gatsby who yearns to be with the love of his life, Daisy Buchanan, played by Carey Mulligan. But when asked whether he feels ready to settle down in real life, the Departed actor remained tight-lipped.
"I never really talk about that kind of stuff," DiCaprio says between smiles.
Despite having been linked to some of the most beautiful women in the business, including models Gisele Bundchen, Bar Refaeli and Erin Heatherton, and actress Blake Lively, DiCaprio was more prone to talk toET about his new film and the talent he said he feels fortunate to work with. Directed by Baz Luhrmann, this is the second time DiCaprio has teamed up with the director of Romeo and Juliet fame, where DiCaprio starred opposite Claire Danes in the star-crossed lovers' story back in 1996.
"Baz and I have remained friends ever since I was 18 years old…We always talked about working together again…He came to me and handed me a first edition of The Great Gatsby and said this is one of my life's passions. I have to do it. He's never been afraid to tackle great literature and has this intense desire to put up on screen, great, intense powerful stories. He's a bold filmmaker.”
The film, based on the 1927 F. Scott Fitzgerald novel of the same name, brings together an all-star cast featuring Tobey Maguire as Nick Carraway, Warrior star Joel Edgerton as Gatsby's nemesis, Tom Buchanan, Now You See Me star Isla Fisher and Zero Dark Thirty's Jason Clarke as George Wilson, to name a few.
Longtime childhood friends and co-stars in the 1993 flick This Boy’s Life, DiCaprio said he was very excited to be able to work on a project with Maguire again.
"A novel like this that is so beloved, such a classic piece of American literature is intimidating in its own right," DiCaprio says. "But to be able to have a partnership and a friend like Tobey that I've known for 25 years -- to enter into this role with who is always going to have my best intentions at heart and vice versa, somebody who I can always be honest with is a huge benefit."
As far as his lady-love onscreen, the Inception star says when Carey Mulligan auditioned for the role of love-torn Daisy Buchanan, they basically hired her on the spot.
"We met a lot of different actresses for the coveted role and she was able to manifest the complexity that is Daisy Buchanan. Carey just came in and really blew us away in the reading and as soon as she left I said to Baz, 'wow I guess we've seen one of the great actresses of our generation,' and we hired her on the spot."
Set in the heart of the provocative Jazz Age in 1922, The Great Gatsby tells the tale of Jay Gatsby, a mysterious entrepreneur who throws lavish parties in Long Island, NY. The story is narrated by Maguire's character, Nick Carroway, who becomes Gatsby's neighbor for the Summer. Drama ensues as Gatsby tries to entice his long-lost love, Daisy Buchanan, away from her husband, Tom Buchanan, who is having an affair with the mechanic's wife, Myrtle Wilson.
The film plays against the backdrop of the modern music stylings of Jay Z, Beyonce, Q-Tip and Andre 3000, to name a few, which DiCaprio says was a bold, but "brilliant" choice.
"What Jazz was during this time period was a new transformative music percolating from the streets and every class and every type of person was listening to it and I thought it was a brilliant choice for Baz to use hip-hop as the sort of modern day interpretation of it," DiCaprio said.
The Great Gatsby hits theaters May 11. For more of our interview with DiCaprio, check out the video above.