Leonardo DiCaprio has turned over an Oscar to the federal government. Luckily, it wasn’t the statue he won in 2016 for The Revenant.
The 42-year-old actor was the recipient of gifts allegedly bought with laundered money. The U.S. Attorney’s Office’s Money Laundering and Asset Recovery Section is going after Red Granite Pictures, which was involved in the production of the 2013 DiCaprio film The Wolf of Wall Street. The production and distribution company reportedly gifted Leo an Oscar that Marlon Brando won in 1955 for his performance in On the Waterfront.
Red Granite was sued in a civil lawsuit last year, and was cited in a new government filing this week. The feds are looking to seize a number of other assets, including the rights to Jim Carrey’s Dumb and Dumber To and Daddy’s Home, which stars Mark Wahlberg and Will Ferrell, as well as valuable art and movie memorabilia belonging to Red Granite, some of which was reportedly gifted to Leo for charity auctions benefitting his Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation.
Red Granite says it’s “actively engaged in discussions with the Justice Department aimed at resolving these civil cases and is fully cooperating.”
DiCaprio had a lengthy statement of his own.
“Last July, upon hearing of the government’s civil action against certain parties involved in the making of The Wolf of Wall Street, Mr. DiCaprio’s representatives – working under his instruction – initiated contact with the Department of Justice,” a DiCaprio spokesperson tells Deadline. “This effort was to determine if there were any gifts or charitable donations originating from the parties named in the civil complaint, and to offer the return of any such gifts or donations with the aid and instruction of the government.
The statement continues, “Prior to the government’s filing of the civil pleading today, Mr. DiCaprio initiated return of these items, which were received and accepted by him for the purpose of being included in an annual charity auction to benefit his eponymous foundation. He has also returned an Oscar originally won by Marlon Brando, which was given to Mr. DiCaprio as a set gift by Red Granite to thank him for his work on The Wolf Of Wall Street.
“Mr. DiCaprio is grateful for the support of the government in this effort, and continues to hope that justice is done in this matter,” Leo’s rep concludes.
Hey, at least the government didn’t take Leo’s actual Oscar. He waited a long time for that one!
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