So, It Turns Out That Leonardo DiCaprio Was The Inspiration For Max In “Hocus Pocus”
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“But, meeting him awakened me to the kind of spirit and fun, and sincerity, that I was looking for in an actor.”
No doubt about it, Hocus Pocus is ~the~ movie of the Halloween season.
It's got classic '90s humor (and fashion), a badass musical number, and it's arguably the film with the most-highly anticipated sequel.
But let’s not forget the real reason you love it: Max Dennison, who (don’t lie) was probably your second sexual awakening that October — after Thackery Binx, of course.
So, imagine my surprise when, in a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly, Hocus Pocus director Kenny Ortega revealed that a young Leonardo DiCaprio actually inspired most of Max’s character.
Disney / Paramount Pictures
Ortega said, “The [casting] ladies called me up and they said, ‘We’re sending you an actor today, but he’s not available. But, you’re going to fall in love with him, but you can’t have him.’”
“I’m like, ‘Why are you teasing me?’ They were like, ‘You need to see this guy because he’ll inspire you and, if nothing else, he’ll help you find the right guy to play Max.’”
He was feeling awkward. He was like, ‘I just feel really bad being here because I’m up for two other movies and I really want them both, and I don’t want to lead you on.’ I was like, ‘That’s okay, I was already warned. What are the movies?’ One of them was This Boy’s Life and the other one was What’s Eating Gilbert Grape. Obviously, he left and incredible things happened for that young man and to this day.
“But, meeting him awakened me to the kind of spirit and fun, and sincerity, that I was looking for in an actor. And, when Omri Katz came around, I fell in love again, and he was our Max.”
No wonder I always thought that Max was such a heartthrob!
(Again, after Thackery Binx.)