Being an assistant to Oscar-winning movie star, especially if that movie star is newly Oscarfied Leonardo DiCaprio, obviously has upsides to it. But it can’t be easy, either. He could turn out to be incredibly demanding and impossible to please. You could be trampled under a stampede of models. He could have the fame-turned-me-actually-insane thing going on. But if you ask someone who’s actually had the gig—actress Kasi Brown, who assisted him during filming for The Aviator in 2003—she’ll tell you he’s a smart, stand-up, down-to-earth guy.
Brown landed the job through connections, because her friend, Kayce Brown was Leo’s assistant in 2002 while he starred in Catch Me If You Can. She stayed on with him for the beginning of Aviator filming in Montreal that year, and invited Kasi to come visit. When Kayce moved on to new things as the filming transitioned to L.A., Kasi was already on good terms with the young star and landed the job.
And while spending all that time getting up close and personal with Leo, Kasi inevitably learned a lot about him. Like how private he is, after he told her he liked Halloween so much because when wearing a costume he was “able to walk amongst people and interact with them without recognition.” He’s whip-smart, she says, with an in-depth knowledge of “politics, pop culture, history, you name it.” He also has a “wicked sense of humor.”
Here is what it’s actually like being paid to hang with Leo day in and day out. According to a foreign media agency, Brown said, “Leo and I always had fun on set.” She further added, “[We loved] to observe people and goof around playing characters, doing accents, whatever. Sometimes I would pretend that he was the stereotype of an entitled celebrity and when he would ask me to do something, I would bow and in a beaten-down voice say, ‘Yes, sir, anything you like sir, anything else, sir?’ and he would laugh and tell me to knock it off.”
“He’s extremely down to earth, and he likes to share stories and life experiences with people,” she added. And the best bit? Leo remained loyal to Kasi long after he wasn’t her boss. She said he still makes efforts to keep in touch and gave her some great feedback and encouragement as she set off on her own career in the industry.
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