You read it right. Leonardo DiCaprio could have played Christian in the classic movie. “Could have” is the operative phrase here. There was just one small, tiny, minuscule detail…Leonardo DeCaprio cannot sing. In fact, he describes his voice as “atrocious.”
Baz Lurhmann wanted to cast his Romeo + Juliet star in the lead role for Moulin Rouge. DeCaprio revealed in an interview with Variety the reason he wasn’t a perfect fit for Christian.
“To be honest, I’m not really prepared to do a musical, simply because I think I have a pretty atrocious voice. But we had a friendly thing where it was me and him and a piano player, and we tried to sing a song together. It didn’t go too well. I think it was “Lean On Me”, and when I hit the high note, he just turned to me. ‘Yes, D, I don’t know if this conversation should continue’.”
As a huge fan of Moulin Rouge, I can’t imagine anyone other than Ewan McGregor playing Christian. Not even someone as amazing as Leonardo DiCaprio. McGregor captured the essence of Christian and the love affair with Satine with such purity that you can’t help but be drawn in to their plight as star-crossed lovers.
So I say a small prayer to the universe and thank them that Leonardo DiCaprio can’t carry a tune in a bucket. We’ve always got Titanic, Leo. Of that, I’ll never let go.
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