Christian Bale claims that many of his successful acting roles in Hollywood are the result of Leonardo DiCaprio passing on them.
The 48-year-old British actor made the comments during a recent interview with GQ. During the conversation, he quipped that, in a sense, he owes DiCaprio his career.
“Look, to this day, any role that anybody gets, it’s only because he’s passed on it beforehand,” Bale told the publication. “It doesn’t matter what anyone tells you. It doesn’t matter how friendly you are with the directors. All those people that I’ve worked with multiple times, they all offered every one of those roles to him first.”
“So, thank you, Leo, because literally, he gets to choose everything he does,” he continued. “And good for him, he’s phenomenal.”
Though some actors could become bitter over always being second choice, the “Thor: Love and Thunder” star insists he’s not offended by DiCaprio getting preferential treatment.
“No,” he said when asked if he was mad about it. “Do you know how grateful I am to get any damn thing? I mean, I can’t do what he does. … And he does it magnificently. But I would suspect that almost everybody of similar age to him in Hollywood owes their careers to him passing on whatever project it is.”
The Academy Award winner recalled one of the most significant instances of taking one of DiCaprio’s rejects. It was for the part of Patrick Bateman in the 2000 thriller “American Psycho,” which wound up being the role that made Bale a household name.
“They had paid me the absolute minimum they were legally allowed to pay me,” he told GQ of the role early in his career. “I remember one time sitting in the makeup trailer and the makeup artists were laughing at me because I was getting paid less than any of them.”
Bale went on to say “nobody” supported casting him in the movie besides director Mary Harron.
“They said they would only make it if they could pay me that amount,” the actor said. “I was prepping for it when other people were playing the part. I was still prepping for it. And, you know, it moved on. I lost my mind. But I won it back.”
Bale is well-known for his method acting in Hollywood, a technique which has won him praise but also elicited criticism from colleagues who think he goes too far.