Cinema’s Dream Team: Martin Scorsese & Leonardo DiCaprio Receive the Cinema Vanguard Award

Feb 8, 2014 at 7:32 am |
By

SBIFF Leonardo DiCaprio

Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio received the Santa Barbara Film Festival Vanguard Award on February 6, an honor given to an actor or director, or team, that has significantly contributed to film, taken artistic risks and created cinematic works that depart from the industry’s mainstream efforts.

The duo have collaborated in creating five films, including The Wolf of Wall Street, The Aviator, Gangs of New York, Shutter Island, and The Departed. The Wolf of Wall Street has been nominated for five Academy Awards, including the Best Picture category.

From joint projects to such individual efforts as Raging Bull and Inception, both Scorcese and DiCaprio have focused in films that portray the way men, and immigrants from Europe, experience life in the U.S. From class structure to psychological issues, both men delve deeply into character-driven roles that stem from compelling scripts that appeal to both the mainstream and independent markets.

 

The Wolf of Wall Street has been compelling for audiences because it portrays megalomania and the unbridled effects of financial success on moguls who allow themselves to fully embrace gluttony. Some critics and social commentaries accused them of celebrating a lifestyle that subverts a civil lifestyle in favor of temporary hedonism, but both men have responded by saying that the film’s purpose is to explore exactly what would happen if a person did embrace all of the material financial rewards money brings. As a film commentary that brings controversy and delight to its audiences, Scorcese and DiCaprio are familiar with navigating the path of its public relations peaks and valleys.

Scorcese has been a mentor to DiCaprio, advising him and helping him grow as an actor and film professional. Both men are the sons of immigrant parents, Scorcese from Italian and DiCaprio from Italian and German descent. They began collaborating in 2002 with the film “Gangs of New York” and the chemistry and passion for filmmaking drove each to continue the relationship in the Aviator in 2004.

Prior to DiCaprio, Scorcese had spent years collaborating with Robert Deniro in such films as Taxi Driver.

Past recipients of the Vanguard Award have included Amy Adams, Nicole Kidman, Vera Farmiga, Peter Sarsgaard, Stanley Tucci, Kristin Scott Thomas and Ryan Gosling. The Santa Barbara Film Festival is an event that occurs each year near Los Angeles between the Academy Award nomination announcement and the ceremony that draws Academy members and film professionals for a peek at premiere films and an opportunity to network in a mountainous and seaside Spanish resort town beloved by so many film professionals.

Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio received the Santa Barbara Film Festival Vanguard Award on February 6, an honor given to an actor or director, or team, that has significantly contributed to film, taken artistic risks and created cinematic works that depart from the industry’s mainstream efforts.