“Look, to this day, any role that anybody gets, it’s only because he’s passed on it beforehand,” the actor told GQ. “It doesn’t matter what anyone tells you. It doesn’t matter how friendly you are with the directors. All those people that I’ve worked with multiple times, they all offered every one of those roles to him first.”
“I had one of those people actually tell me that. So, thank you, Leo, because literally, he gets to choose everything he does. And good for him, he’s phenomenal,” he added. “I would suspect that almost everybody of similar age to him in Hollywood owes their careers to him passing on whatever project it is.”
Both actors have been working in Hollywood for years. They are of similar age (Bale is 48 years old and DiCaprio is 47) and both actors began their careers as children (Bale first starred in a film in 1987, while DiCaprio’s first screen role was in 1993). Both actors have also won an Oscar (Bale won Best Supporting Actor in 2011 for his work in The Fighter, while DiCaprio won his Best Actor Oscar in 2016 for The Revenant).
Arguably Bale’s best known roles to date have been playing Patrick Bateman in 2000’s American Psycho and then playing Batman in Christopher Nolan’s trilogy Batman Begins (2005), The Dark Knight (2008) and then The Dark Knight Rises (2012).
Bale has had a busy couple of years. He starred as Gorr the God Butcher in this year’s Thor: Love and Thunder, and has starred in David O Russell’s latest film Amsterdam, alongside Margot Robbie and John David Washington, which comes out this week.
His next film will be The Pale Blue Eye, a gothic-horror mystery which is set to be released on Netflix in January 2023. Set in 1830, a detective Augustus Landor (played by Bale) investigates murders at US military academy West Point, with the help of a young cadet called Edgar Allan Poe (played by Harry Melling, Harry Potter’s Dudley Dursley). Gillian Anderson and Charlotte Gainsbourg will also star.
In the same GQ interview, Bale said he also enjoys it when he isn’t acting: “I’ve always been bent on ‘When’s this gonna end? This has to end.’ I like doing things that have nothing to do with film. And I find myself very happily not playing dress-up, not pretending to be somebody else for long lengths of time.”
Amsterdam will be released on October 7.