That pesky iceberg kept Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet from growing into an old married couple in “Titanic.”
They finally get to test-drive a long-term relationship in “Revolutionary Road,” and the two close friends really nail the whole love-and-marriage thing.
Lies. Distrust. Infidelity. Shouting matches to rival George and Martha’s in “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?”
After playing new lovers in a doomed romance aboard the Titanic, DiCaprio and Winslet had a great time tearing into each other as spouses in a sinking relationship in “Revolutionary Road,” which reaches area theaters today.
“We very much took advantage of our friendship and our relationship for this film,” DiCaprio said in an interrview alongside Winslet.
“When I read the script, I thought, ‘Look at these scenes,’ and I’m imagining Kate doing it with me and being able to push each other as much as we possibly could. …
“I know the fact that she’s such a good friend of mine, we know each other so well, we know that we could push those boundaries, because we intrinsically know we have the best intentions for each other,” he said. “So there’s no weird, hidden ego.
“There’s no hidden anything. It’s two people just trying to do their best and just pushing each other.”
“Revolutionary Road” casts DiCaprio, 34, and Winslet, 33, as Frank and April Wheeler, a couple suffocating amid the blandness of 1950s American suburbia who hope to resurrect their crumbling marriage by moving to Paris with their children.
Directed by Winslet’s husband, Sam Mendes – at the urging of the actress, a longtime fan of Richard Yates’ 1961 novel – the film calls on the actors to quarrel savagely right from the film’s opening moments.
It was an interesting challenge for Winslet and DiCaprio, who became close chums on the arduous “Titanic” shoot and cannot recall ever raising their voices to each other.
“People would say, ‘Oh my gosh, you guys are such good friends. Did you ever, like, fight?’ And we really would have to stop and think about it and realize that we hadn’t,” Winslet said.
After 1997’s “Titanic” – the biggest modern blockbuster with $1.8 billion at the box office worldwide – Winslet and DiCaprio knew they had to choose carefully if they were going to pair off again on-screen.
“To try to re-create anything close to that would be a mistake,” said DiCaprio. “It’s important for me and for both of us to not make it look like we want to become sort of a couple that revisits things.”
In a haughty British accent, he jokingly added: “Well, they enjoyed that first performance, let’s give it to them one more time, darling. Just like the old days.”
Although he and Winslet both felt it was just a matter of time before they teamed up again, it took 11 years.
“As the years were going by, the idea of working together again, I was craving it more and more,” Winslet said.
“Very selfishly, I felt it had to be the right thing, because I want to be on the set with him every day. I want to spend as much time with him as possible.
“It wasn’t about equal roles, even. It was, ‘I want to bleed that experience dry.’ I really do, because I know what’s there to be had, and anything less than that wouldn’t have seemed as special.”
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