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Leonardo DiCaprio explains why he passed on playing Anakin Skywalker in the Star Wars prequels

Star Wars
Posted December 30 2015 — 9:43 AM EST

In a recent interview with ShortList magazine, Leonardo DiCaprio recalled some of the roles he turned down throughout his career. On the list were Spider-Man (which went to Tobey Maguire) and Robin in Batman Forever (which went to Chris O’Donnell). But the one garnering the most interest is Anakin Skywalker in the Star Wars prequels.

Before Hayden Christensen made a name for himself in these films, DiCaprio was in talks for the gig. “I did have a meeting with George Lucas about that, yes,” he said. “[I] just didn’t feel ready to take that dive. At that point.”

Five Oscar nominations later (with a potential sixth on the way) and now he’s not opposed to joining the blockbuster franchise ranks. Even with superhero movies, DiCaprio said, “You never know. You never know. They’re getting better and better as far as complex characters in these movies. I haven’t yet. But no, I don’t rule out anything.”


Meanwhile, Christensen is returning to film with the faith-based 90 Minutes in Heaven, though he admitted to taking a break from Hollywood shortly after his Star Wars residencey. “I guess I felt like I had this great thing in Star Wars that provided all these opportunities and gave me a career, but it all kind of felt a little too handed to me,” he told the Los Angeles Times. “I didn’t want to go through life feeling like I was just riding a wave.”

DiCaprio’s The Revenant is in limited release now and opens wide on Jan. 8.