You'll Never Believe How Leonardo DiCaprio's Dad Landed a Cameo in Licorice Pizza

In a new interview, Licorice Pizza director Paul Thomas Anderson explained how he tracked down Leonardo DiCaprio’s father, George, to make a perfect cameo.

By Mike Vulpo Dec 03, 2021 6:19 PMTags
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Sometimes, truth is stranger than fiction.

When it comes to Paul Thomas Anderson's latest movie, Licorice Pizza, there's star power everywhere you turn. From Sean Penn and Maya Rudolph to Bradley Cooper and Alana Haim, the casting alone is enough to get any movie fan intrigued.

But as the coming-of-age flick plays in select theatres, some moviegoers may spot Leonardo DiCaprio's father, George, making a cameo. In a new interview with The New York Times journalist Kyle Buchanan, Paul explained how it all came to be.

"I created a picture of a guy who owned a wig shop that sold these water beds, and I couldn't put my finger on it," he recalled. "I kept saying, ‘Who do I know that looks like this?' And like a bolt of lightning, I remember, like, ‘Leo's dad looks exactly like this.'"

After he tracked George down," Paul was delighted to find out that the 78-year-old writer was interested in being part of the project.

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"He said, ‘Sure.' I explained the scenario to him," Paul recalled. "He said, ‘Sounds great. Did Leo tell you that I owned a water bed company?' It was called Foggy Bottom."

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And just like that, Paul knew he was headed in the right direction.

"It was one of those things," he explained. "I said, ‘Well, you're the right man for the job.'"

While Leonardo may be the biggest movie star in his family, he has always been quick to thank his parents for all their support in his career.

"My dad always told me, ‘Go out there, son, and whatever you do, I don't care if you're successful or not, just have an interesting life. Just be happy to put your pants on in the morning,'" Leonardo recalled to Parade in 2016. "I believe I'm doing that."