In the span of his 18-year career, Leonardo DiCaprio has grossed more than $1 billion at the box office. And yet, the 36-year-old actor tells the October issue of GQ that money isn't what motivates him to pursue new projects.
"Throughout my career, I never knew which movies of mine made money and which didn't. When Titanic came out, people would say, 'Do you realize what a success this is?' And I'd say, 'Yeah, yeah, it's a hit.' The [money] stuff never mattered to me until I was into my thirties and got interested in producing," he says. "But even now I say that unless you want to prove that you can carry a film with your name, continuously trying to achieve box-office success is a dead end."
DiCaprio — who began romancing Gossip Girl's Blake Lively this spring — hopes to follow in Clint Eastwood's footsteps and transition into directing.
"If I did direct, I would try to have the same no bulls–t approach to it as [Eastwood] and his crew have," he tells GQ. "Seriously, there are no frills on his set. It's a small, tight-knit crew."
Eastwood, who directed DiCaprio in this November's J. Edgar, thinks the Inception star would be fantastic behind the lens.
"A lot of guys falter when they get in that chair. John Wayne — he found it overpowering," Eastwood, 81, says. "But for somebody who's relaxed and understands other actors and likes the process, it's kind of simple."
Adds DiCaprio: "I would imagine it's really a game of deciding what to keep your attention on, as opposed to the twenty other things I'm sure people want you to pay attention to."
The October issue of GQ hits newsstands nationwide September 20.