Everyone starts small, even great actors. And so did Leonardo DiCaprio, who starred with Johnny Depp in the movie What’s Eating Gilbert Grape. Even though DiCaprio wasn’t much famous back then, both he and Depp got much appreciated for their role in the 1993 rom-com.
However, fans must not be aware of some facts about the movie that happened behind the scenes – like when Johnny Depp ‘tortured’ Leonardo DiCaprio because he (Depp) was suffering from the breakup with Winona Ryder.
Johnny Depp Tortured Leonardo DiCaprio While Filming What’s Eating Gilbert Grape
During the shoot of the movie What’s Eating Gilbert Grape DiCaprio was only nineteen, while his co-actor Johnny Depp was in his early thirties. At that time, Depp was going through a breakup with Winona Ryder and was having a ‘really hard time’ when he started bullying Leonardo DiCaprio on the sets of the $10M movie.
In an interview, Johnny Depp recalled the rough treatment he gave to the young DiCaprio while shooting the movie.
“It was a hard time for me, that film, for some reason. I don’t know why. I tortured him. I really did. He was always talking about these video games, you know? I told you it was kind of a dark period. I was like ‘No, I will not give you a drag of my cigarette while you hide from your mother again, Leo.’”
In his defense, Johnny Depp claimed he was going through a ‘really hard time’ during that period. But while talking about that in the interview, Depp also admitted how much he regretted treating young DiCaprio that way.
Johnny Depp Respects Leonardo DiCaprio
After talking about how he bullied Leonardo DiCaprio on the sets of the $10M movie, Johnny Depp also admitted that he respected DiCaprio for how hard he worked in the movie. Talking about that time, Depp said,
“I’d say the absolute truth is that I respect Leo a lot. He worked really hard on that film and spent a lot of time researching. He came to set, and he was ready to work hard, and all his ducks were in a row.”
And no doubt he worked hard, for both Depp and DiCaprio received global appreciation for their respective roles in the movie What’s Eating Gilbert Grape. In the movie, Johnny Depp and Leonardo DiCaprio played brothers, where Depp was a clerk at a grocery store and the elder brother, while DiCaprio played the role of Depp’s intellectually challenged younger brother.
You can stream What’s Eating Gilbert Grape on HBO Max.