Leonardo DiCaprio, an actor, and producer is highly renowned for his abilities and versatility in the entertainment industry. Throughout the course of his career, DiCaprio has acted in some of the most well-known films ever made, winning several awards, and receiving high accolades for his performance. However, his cultural impact extends well beyond the movies and has a broad impact on how people think and act. The cultural impact of Leonardo DiCaprio will be looked at in this article, including his influence on pop culture and design as well as his environmental campaigning.
Young Leo was a nature lover
Although a young Leonardo DiCaprio had dreams of being a marine biologist in addition to being an actor, fate had other plans for him, and he landed his first acting part at the age of just five. He first became aware of the state of the earth as a youngster while watching documentaries on the loss of rainforests, and this awareness has undoubtedly persisted through the years.
Meeting Al Gore
When DiCaprio was 24 years old, he visited the White House to see Al Gore, the vice president of the United States at the time and a well-known activist on the climate catastrophe. The meeting’s purpose was to particularly talk about global warming, and DiCaprio considers it a turning point in his climate advocacy.
He established his environmental foundation at the age of 24
That same year, when the actor had just finished playing Jack in the hugely successful film Titanic, the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation (LDF) was created. The foundation’s original goals included preserving the planet’s last remaining wilderness areas and figuring out how to create a healthy coexistence between humans and nature. It currently funds more than 35 cutting-edge conservation initiatives throughout the globe that save vulnerable ecosystems and important species.
Leo and documentaries
DiCaprio created and narrated his first environmental documentary in 2007. The film, The Eleventh Hour, is a commentary on the state of the environment at the time and features interviews with experts including Nobel Prize winner Wangari Maathai, oceanographer Sylvia Earle, and former Soviet Union leader Mikhail Gorbachev. Since then, DiCaprio has worked on further documentaries, including producing Water Planet and Global Warning as well as narrating Ice and Fire, a film about global warming.
Protecting Tigers in Nepal
LDF awarded its first sizable grant for conservation in 2010. It made a $1 million donation in collaboration with WWF to support the growth of a creative initiative in Nepal. To guarantee that tigers have the freedom to wander, the project, which works throughout the Terai Arc Landscape, increases anti-poaching patrols, safeguards key sites for tiger breeding, continually monitors tiger populations, and restores important corridors. As a result, Nepal has made fantastic strides in doubling the number of wild tigers in the country. The organization has given more than $80 million in grants for conservation initiatives worldwide since this inaugural donation.
Saving elephants in Thailand
A WWF petition that had 1.5 million signatures and was backed by the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation in 2013 asked Thailand to stop trading in ivory. At the time, DiCaprio urged people to join the petition, saying, “A lot of the ivory trade goes through Thailand.” We have the power to protect these lovely creatures. Join me and the World Wildlife Fund and encourage Thailand to outlaw all ivory sales.’ As a direct result of the petition, Yingluck Shingawatra, the country’s prime minister, promised to put a stop to the trade.
The United Nations and Leo
In 2014, DiCaprio received the title of UN Messenger of Peace for Climate Change. And it does not end there; he also serves on the boards of Pristine Seas and Oceans 5, the Natural Resources Defense Council, the World Wildlife Fund, and the International Fund for Animal Welfare. Additionally, he has developed a strong interest in renewable energy and serves as an adviser for The Solutions Project, a group that accelerates the use of sustainable energy.
Is Leonardo DiCaprio vegan?
DiCaprio, an early investor in Beyond Meat, is well-known for urging his tens of millions of social media fans to convert from conventional meat to plant-based substitutes. More recently, the actor has also made investments in cell-cultivated leather, a more compassionate method of making leather than removing cows from the process.
Regardless, it is still unknown if DiCaprio himself leads a vegan diet. The actor’s investments in plant-based companies suggest that, even if he has not declared himself to be vegan, he at least supports the lifestyle for its favorable effects on the environment.
How Leonardo DiCaprio is Saving the Planet
Here are ways Leonardo DiCaprio is contributing to environmental preservation, from his numerous documentaries to his generous investments in vegan businesses.
1. He creates documentaries that profoundly alter viewers’ perceptions
Do you know about Cowspiracy? In 2014, a ground-breaking film that addressed the problems with animal husbandry and its catastrophic effects on the environment startled the world. DiCaprio served as an executive producer, yeah. Additionally, he served as executive producer of the 2007 film The 11th Hour and the 2016 film Before the Flood, which he also narrated.
2. He is not scared to raise significant concerns using his platform
DiCaprio used his first Best Actor acceptance speech to highlight the climate catastrophe in 2016 before Joaquin Phoenix won his standing ovation for discussing the dairy business in 2019. He was receiving the award for his performance in The Revenant, a film that perfectly captures the majesty and might of Mother Nature and the vast outdoors, so it was only fitting that he did so.
On his social media accounts, actor Leonardo DiCaprio discusses urgent topics that have an impact on our world and its inhabitants in between making important remarks on live television. He strongly condemned poaching on Facebook in 2012. You would think that his Instagram account for World Wildlife is it after taking a glance. He uses his platforms to spread the word about the eco-friendly and vegan businesses he supports. Internet trolls are powerless in the face of Leonardo DiCaprio’s enormous impact.
3. He is spreading the message to the adults of tomorrow
DiCaprio immediately won the hearts of those who were old enough to watch Titanic when it originally came out, but he continues to draw in viewers who have no concept of what it is like to watch Jack go into the water on a large screen (“I’ll never let go!” Sorry, we could not help it). For his ongoing environmental activism, he was given the Big Green Help award at the Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Awards in 2009. He then seized the chance to inculcate in his youthful audience a feeling of environmental responsibility.
4. He is funding a vegan business
DiCaprio spends his income in plant-based businesses that are paving the way for a more sustainable future in addition to contributing to a variety of charities and non-profit organizations that work to save the environment. Among other companies, he has stakes in Beyond Meat, Hippeas, and Califia Farms. He most recently joined the Sustainability & Health Advisory Council of Perfect Day in 2021, a food tech firm that developed the first dairy ice cream without the use of animals.
5. He has received UN approval
With a particular emphasis on climate change, DiCaprio was designated a United Nations Messenger of Peace in 2017. At the UN Climate Summit, when he officially accepted the job, he said to the audience, “I have a moral duty to speak up at this important point in human history—it is a moment for action. Preach, Leo, preach. “How we handle the climate crisis in the coming years will probably determine the fate of humanity and our planet.”
6. To protect the environment and animals, he established his foundation
Before his Oscar success and UN endorsement, Leonardo DiCaprio embarked on a personal mission to transform the world. To save the wild species that live on Earth, he founded the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation in 1998, which is now known as Re: wild. The foundation’s mission is worldwide, encompassing anything from preserving various natural California ecosystems to defending elephants in Africa. Each species plays a role in the delicate balance of this planet. We are maintaining our home by protecting these animals and their habitats.
7. He is placing a large wager on cell-based meat
There are other investments in DiCaprio’s portfolio than meat substitutes. He also has investments in actual meat produced via cell culture. The actor is an investor and advisor for two pioneering cell-based meat companies: Aleph Farms and Mosa Meat. Both of these companies produce animal meat from a small number of animal cells in a lab setting, thus creating real meat without the need to slaughter animals or the harmful environmental impacts of animal agriculture.
While longtime vegans may be hesitant to try cell-based meat, one thing is certain: DiCaprio is helping pave the way toward a slaughter-free future.
8. He is into solar
The energy we require now is solar; it is no longer the energy of the future.
DiCaprio collaborated with Kingo, an off-the-grid solar startup, in 2018 to provide power to those in need. The company installs solar power systems in isolated locations with little or no energy. This initiative not only improves the quality of life for these communities but also does so without harming the environment.
9. He is assisting in bringing forth a new age of ethical fashion
Fur has been condemned for its brutality by well-known fashion firms, businesses, and even popular publications, while leather is still seen as a wardrobe essential despite its torturous manufacturing method and catastrophic effects on the Amazon rainforest.
Thankfully, vegan leather substitutes manufactured from cactus, pineapple leaves, and grape skin are becoming more popular. And right now, cell-cultivated leather is a novel option that DiCaprio is helping to fund. The actor invested in the California-based business VitroLabs Inc. earlier this year to produce the first cell-based leather prototype ever.
And while it could take some time before cell-cultivated leather appears on garment racks at your neighborhood mall, you can buy leather-free shoes at LCI with DiCaprio’s endorsement. This year, the actor invested in this vegan shoe company that values the environment. It could be time for DiCaprio to add “fashion innovator” to his list of accomplishments.
10. He is bringing about a revolution in the fast-food industry
The Neat Burger vegan fast-food company, which was started by Lewis Hamilton, a world championship racing car driver, inaugurated its first US outlet with assistance from DiCaprio. Following the actor’s strategic investment in the restaurant, Neat Burger concentrated its efforts on starting its US growth. Today, this celebrity-backed burger company is available to New Yorkers in Manhattan.
These kinds of successes offer us hope for the future. DiCaprio’s work demonstrates that we can still like contemporary comforts like the light at 2 a.m. and juicy, meaty burgers; we simply need to look for clever solutions that satisfy our needs without endangering the environment.