James Cameron Says Leo Almost Didn’t Get the Role of Jack in “Titanic”
Can you imagine the movie “Titanic” without Leonardo DiCaprio? Yeah, neither can we.
Cameron, who's currently on the press junket circuit promoting his upcoming “Avatar” sequel, told GQ that DiCaprio was really close to not getting the lead role as Jack. Cameron wanted DiCaprio to do a screen test with Kate Winslet, who played Rose in the movie, to see if the duo had any chemistry.
DiCaprio went in thinking it was just a meeting to meet Winslet and not run lines. After DiCaprio said he doesn't read, Cameron wasted no time and thanked him for coming by. He then explained to DiCaprio at the time that the film would take two years to make, and he didn't want to make “the wrong decision in casting.” DiCaprio acquiesced to Cameron’s request, got the part, and the rest is Oscars and box office history.
“So he comes in ... and every ounce of his entire being is just so negative right up until I said, “Action,” and then he turned into Jack. And Kate just lit up, and they went into this whole thing and he played the scene,” Cameron said. “Dark clouds had opened up and a ray of sun came down and lit up Jack. I'm like, “All right, he's the guy.’”