During an interview with The Telegraph, published online Thursday, the famous filmmaker recalled working with the Oscar-winning actor on his latest project, which is based on the true story of the murders of members of the Osage nation in the 1920s.
According to Scorsese, DiCaprio and De Niro went about their roles completely differently since DiCaprio’s improvisation was “endless, endless, endless,” while “Bob [De Niro] didn’t want to talk.”
But Scorsese and De Niro both grew tired of the Inception actor’s constant ad-libbing. “Every now and then, Bob and I would look at each other and roll our eyes a little bit. And we’d tell him: ‘You don’t need that dialogue,’” the director said.
In the film, De Niro and DiCaprio play an uncle (William Hale) and nephew (Ernest Burkhart) plotting to steal the oil underneath the tribe’s land.
Throughout his career, DiCaprio has been known for improvising his lines, including in some of his biggest projects such as Titanic, The Wolf of Wall Street and Once Upon A Time In Hollywood.
Earlier this week, Scorsese also revealed to The Irish Times that after working on the film’s script for two years with his co-screenwriter, Eric Roth, DiCaprio came in and suggested some changes.
The filmmaker said the original script was told “from the point of view of the bureau agents coming in to investigate” the murders, but The Departed actor had another idea.
“Leo came to me and asked, ‘Where is the heart of this story?’” Scorsese explained. “I had had meetings and dinners with the Osage, and I thought, ‘Well, there’s the story.’ The real story, we felt, was not necessarily coming from the outside, with the bureau, but rather from the inside, from Oklahoma.”
Killers of the Flower Moon is currently playing in theaters.