'Leonardo DiCaprio unrecognizable' in pic from Scorsese film: Uh, really?

The internet has zero mercy, as the New York Post learned.

Abrar Al-Heeti Video producer / CNET
Abrar Al-Heeti is a video host and producer for CNET, with an interest in internet trends, entertainment, pop culture and digital accessibility. Before joining the video team, she was a writer for CNET's culture team. She graduated with bachelor's and master's degrees in journalism from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Though Illinois is home, she now loves San Francisco -- steep inclines and all.
Expertise Abrar has spent her career at CNET breaking down the latest trends on TikTok, Twitter and Instagram, while also reporting on diversity and inclusion initiatives in Hollywood and Silicon Valley. Credentials
  • Named a Tech Media Trailblazer by the Consumer Technology Association in 2019, a winner of SPJ NorCal's Excellence in Journalism Awards in 2022 and has twice been a finalist in the LA Press Club's National Arts & Entertainment Journalism Awards.
Abrar Al-Heeti
3 min read
Leonardo DiCaprio sits next to Lily Gladstone at a dining table

This unassuming picture stirred up countless jokes on Twitter. 

Apple/New York Post

The beauty (and pain) of the internet is that it will always call you out if you say anything it finds ridiculous. The New York Post is experiencing this torment firsthand after posting a tweet Monday that reads: "Leonardo DiCaprio unrecognizable in first photos of new Scorsese film," alongside an image of a guy who looks just like DiCaprio. 

The tweet links to a Post article featuring the first photos from Martin Scorsese's upcoming Western, Killers of the Flower Moon, which does not yet have a release date. The photos include a shot of a "plain-looking" DiCaprio sitting next to Lily Gladstone in a dining room. A screenshot of the headline posted to Twitter on Monday appears to show that it, too, described the actor as unrecognizable, though the headline seems to have since been changed to the more simple "Leonardo DiCaprio seen in first photos from new Scorsese film." 

Still, the internet wasn't willing to let the publication slide for its seemingly amiss observation. In fact, the incident served as a perfect opportunity for people to show off their stellar meme-making abilities. 

One clever tweet laid the image over a template resembling the online verification tool used to distinguish humans from robots: "Select all images with a Leonardo DiCaprio. Click verify once there are none left." 

"Nah I can see him: that's him right there," one person tweeted alongside a picture of a giant yellow finger pointing at DiCaprio.

Another user seized the opportunity to resurface the timeless DiCaprio pointing meme, which shows him playing Rick Dalton in the 2019 film Once Upon a Time in Hollywood and excitedly pointing at a TV screen. The tweeter captioned the oft-shared image: "Me recognizing him."

Other folks had fun adding filters that would, in fact, make the actor unrecognizable, like the Zoom cat filter or a mustache disguise. 

"It took me about 45 minutes but I think I'm in the case," an image with a giant red circle over DiCaprio is captioned.

Others sarcastically pointed out the only other person in the picture who could possibly be identified as DiCaprio, zooming in on his female co-star Gladstone. "Wow that's some movie magic," a tweet reads.

"He must be the person in the left if he's unrecognizable because the person on the right looks exactly like Leonardo DiCaprio," one person remarked. 

Some took a direct dig at the New York Post, with one person sharing an image of a fridge with several gallons of milk alongside the caption, "New York Post: 'we're all out of milk.'"

Even the Dallas Fort Worth International Airport got in on the fun, sharing an image of the actor in the 2002 film Catch Me If You Can, complete with shades and a pilot's uniform. "Leo DiCaprio looks totally unrecognizable in his first visit to DFW Airport," the airport wrote.

The Museum of English Rural Life also chimed in, mockingly tweeting a picture of a sheep with that same caption: "Leonardo DiCaprio unrecognisable in new Martin Scorcese [sic] film."

It's hard to imagine the New York Post knew it was about to inspire a flurry of memes with its tweet, some of which, given the history of other frequently resurfaced DiCaprio memes, could have lasting power.

"I'm going to tell my grandchildren this was Leonardo DiCaprio," one tweet reads.

They'll never believe you.