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Leonardo DiCaprio has played every role from Howard Hughes to Shakespeare's Romeo. However, one of his next big projects will be something very different, except for the name, he'll still go by the same first name. Leonardo DiCaprio is currently attached to star in a movie about the artist and inventor Leonardo Da Vinci, as Paramount just scored the film rights to Walter Isaacson's upcoming book about the Renaissance Man.
According to Deadline, Leonardo Di Caprio was actually named for Leonardo Da Vinci, after his mother felt the future Oscar winner kick for the first time while looking at one of Da Vinci's paintings, at least that's the story. The connection between the two will grow even stronger if the planned movie goes forward and DiCaprio plays Da Vinci on screen. Walter Isaacson previously wrote the book that Danny Boyle's Steve Jobs was based on, so we're guessing Paramount is already considering the film's Oscar potential, especially with the often nominated DiCaprio on board to star.
If one thing is for sure the marketing writes itself. Leonardo DiCaprio as Leonardo Da Vinci is the sort of thing that will look perfect on a movie poster and stay in the minds of moviegoers. A period piece like that is also very likely to be a potential awards contender in what ever year it's eventually released.
Expectations for the book and the potential movie are apparently fairly high, as Paramount and Universal got into a bidding war over the film rights that reportedly reached seven figures. Not bad for a book that isn't even out yet. It doesn't actually get published until October. It's not uncommon for film rights to sell prior to a book's release, especially for an author with a proven track record. Still, the amount of interest here really ran up the scoreboard when it came to how much the rights were able to fetch.
Leonardo DiCaprio is the only name currently attached to the film project so we'll be keeping an eye our for announcements of a director as well as a screenwriter. Walter Isaacson has never adapted his own work for the screen before so there will likely be somebody else brought in to do the film adaptation. Considering the fact that the studio paid seven figures for this, they'll likely want to get moving on the film version quickly.
Since Leonardo Di Caprio is attached to this project it must clearly be a special movie for him. Perhaps he just feels a kinship to the artist due to the fact that he was apparently named for the man. For whatever the reason, this has the potential to be a fantastic movie. Stay tuned to CinemaBlend for more details as this project moves forward.