Leonardo DiCaprio Discusses Turning Down Role to Play Anakin Skywalker

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The year 1999 has become a significant memory in the minds of Star Wars fans’ as devoted individuals of the highly-popular space opera anxiously awaited the release of not one, but three new films, tying together the universe through the prequel trilogy. By that time Leonardo DiCaprio had already established a very strong presence and name for himself amongst the film industry, through work such as The Basketball Diaries, Romeo + Juliet and Titanic.

The actor had already reached great heights amongst the industry, which had Star Wars director George Lucas come knocking at his door during the pre-production stage of Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace. Lucas approached DiCaprio with an intent of inquiring whether Leo would be interested in accepting the role as the famed Anakin Skywalker, set to become the infamous Sith Lord, Darth Vader; to which he simply declined.
During a recent interview with The Shortlist, Leo was asked to elaborate on his decision to decline the major role amongst the Prequel Trilogy, to which DiCaprio laughed in amusement and responded.  When asked about being offered the role to play Anakin Skywalker, he answered, “I did have a meeting with George Lucas about that, yes.”
Then, when prompted as to why he didn’t accept the role Leo simply smiled and chuckled. Basically, he felt he was not yet ready for such a role.
When we take a step back in time and review the Prequel Trilogy, we cannot help but wonder if reviews and response may have changed with such a major change to the film. Would the trilogy still have received the highly-negative response if this role had been filled by Leonardo DiCaprio, instead of Hayden Christensen? This is one question we will never have the answer to.
Would you like to see Leo fill the role of a new character in the upcoming trilogy or Anthology films? Let us know in the comments below!

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