There’s probably very few things that can surprise 47-year old Academy Award winner Leonardo DiCaprio. Yet, after about 30 years in the business, the actor was stunned to find out that his father, George DiCaprio, was set to cameo in Paul Thomas Anderson’s Licorice Pizza.

DiCaprio the Younger spoke to Entertainment Tonight at the NYC premiere for his latest Netflix flick, Don’t Look Up.

‘I haven’t seen it yet but my dad, George DiCaprio, has a cameo in a Paul Thomas Anderson movie!’ DiCaprio said. George DiCaprio himself is an accomplished writer, editor, and artist – famous for contributing to 1970s-80s ‘underground comix’ culture.

George eventually divorced Leonardo’s mother Irmelin Indenbirken in 1975, when the boy was a year old. He went on to play a massive supporting role in Leo’s life, helping him screen scripts, snag auditions, and manage his early career.

The news actually surfaced in an unpublished part of an interview. Held between New York Times reporter Kyle Buchanan and Paul Thomas Anderson, the director spilled the beans of how he got Leo’s dad casted:

“I created a picture of a guy who owned a wig shop that sold these waterbeds, and I couldn’t put my finger on it. I kept saying, “Who do I know that looks like this?” And like a bolt of lightning, I remember, like, “Leo’s dad looks exactly like this.” So I tracked him down, asked him if he’d ever be interested in being in a film. He said, “Sure.” I explained the scenario to him.

He said, “Sounds great. Did Leo tell you that I owned a water bed company?” It was called ‘Foggy Bottom”, shared Anderson.

In his own words, Anderson joked that he had found ‘the right man for the job’. The film itself is set in 1970’s California, as Alana Kane(Alana Haim) and Gary Valentine(Cooper Hoffmman) explore a bygone era and fall in love.

Licorice Pizza first opened for private screenings back in November, and went live across the US on Christmas Day. It was a massive critical success – drawing in heaps of press praise while shooting past 90% on RottenTomatoes.com. Hopefully, we’ll see the film make it onto Indian streaming services soon.

Leonardo DiCaprio will return to the screen with Martin Scorsese’s Killers of the Flower Moon, which is set for a 2022 release.

(Image Sources: MGM Entertainment, Thierry Chesnot)