Good time to give Leonardo DiCaprio an Oscar: Jon Favreau

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Los Angeles, Feb 25 (IANS) From his “Titanic” co-star Kate Winslet to actor and nominee Eddie Redmayne, several Hollywood celebrities have come out in support of Leonardo DiCaprio taking home his first Academy Award this year. Now actor and director Jon Favreau has also joined the chorus, saying “The Revenant” was a wonderful film and DiCaprio deserves an Oscar for his performance.

Favreau, who is looking forward to the release of Disney’s “The Jungle Book”, heaped praise on filmmaker Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu’s semi-biographical western “The Revenant”.

When this IANS correspondent asked Favreau – of “Iron Man” fame – whether he is rooting for his “The Wolf of Wall Street” co-star, he said DiCaprio has done a “spectacular” job in the “The Revenant”.

“I just worked with him on ‘The Wolf of Wall Street’ and I think he did a spectacular job in that movie and I think everybody thinks that he deserves an Oscar at some point and it is a good time to give him one.

“‘The Revenant’ was a wonderful film and the visual effects they had were very good and it was emotional,” he said.

The film, inspired by true events, narrates a story of man’s epic adventure of survival and revenge including how he survives an attack by a bear, has bagged 12 nominations at the forthcoming 88th Academy Awards, scheduled to take place on February 28 at the Dolby Theatre here.

The film had previously swept the 73rd edition of the Golden Globe awards and also clinched top honours at Baftas 2016.

“The Revenant” is not Favreau’s only best pick. The director, who has infused new life into Rudyard Kipling’s “The Jungle Book” with a 3D live-animation fantasy film, noted that 2015 had been a “good year for movies”.

“For the Oscar season, (there were) a lot of good movies last year. ‘The Revenant’ was wonderful. I (also) liked ‘The Big Short’, ‘Mad Max: Fury Road’, ‘Spotlight’. I cannot remember all of them but there were a lot of movies that I loved…even smaller movies which we have not heard a lot about like ‘Woman in Gold’, ‘Brooklyn’.”

“It was a very good year for movies; I am glad that my movie is not coming this year because so many good movie are there…”

With no release last year and “The Jungle Book” slated to release in India on April 8, a week ahead of its release in the US, the director noted he was a spectator to all the content being churned out – and was impressed by the quality.

“I think this has been a banner year as we say for movies… I am glad that there are different awards to spread it out. I also loved ‘The Martians’ ; so it’s been a great year as an audience…,” he said.

As for “The Jungle Book”, the film brings back the adventurous tale that first got made as an animation film in 1967.

With 12-year-old Indian-American Neel Sethi playing Mowgli, and featuring voices by iconic actors like Ben Kingsley, Bill Murray, Scarlett Johansson, Idris Elba and Christopher Walken, the film relates the story of a young boy’s captivating journey of self-discovery when he is forced to abandon the only home he has ever known.

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