From Beverly Hills to the BBC Breakout! How Camila Morrone emerged from ex-boyfriend Leonardo DiCaprio’s Titanic-shaped shadow to win a plum role on British TV… with a little help from her ‘stepdad’ Al Pacino

For some it takes an army to win the war, but for Camila Morrone it took a reduced regiment of two generationally divided actors to pull her out of no-mans land and into the sight-line of eager casting directors.

Still on the outer fringes of stardom, Morrone’s professional fortunes are about to change rather significantly thanks to a surprise new role in BBC drama The Night Manager.

The show, starring Tom Hiddleston and adapted from the late John Le Carré’s 1993 novel, was an instant hit following its initial release in 2016.

And with a long-awaited second series in the works, Morrone, 26, has been drafted in to replace Australian actress Elizabeth Debicki – whose own career was given a major boost thanks to the show.

It is the latest step on a path that began more than decade ago with a small part in James Franco‘s 2013 feature Bukowski, a forgettable biopic based on the childhood years of celebrated American novelist and poet Charles Bukowski.

For some it takes an army to win the war, but for Camila Morrone it took a reduced regiment of two generationally divided yet equally talented actors to pull her out of no-mans land and into the sight-line of eager casting directors

For some it takes an army to win the war, but for Camila Morrone it took a reduced regiment of two generationally divided yet equally talented actors to pull her out of no-mans land and into the sight-line of eager casting directors

Morrone remains close to Al Pacino, who dated her actress mother Lucila Sola for four years IL-R: Lucila Sola, Al Pacino and Camila Morrone at the Venice Film Festival in 2014)

Morrone remains close to Al Pacino, who dated her actress mother Lucila Sola for four years IL-R: Lucila Sola, Al Pacino and Camila Morrone at the Venice Film Festival in 2014)

But while the road for most struggling actors is littered with obstacles, Morrone’s has been helpfully cleared by her pseudo step-father – Hollywood legend Al Pacino – and former boyfriend Leonardo DiCaprio.

The desire to act came early, with Morrone born to Argentinian actors to Maximo Morrone and Lucila Polak in 1997, shortly after their move from South America to southern California.

Her parents would subsequently divorce in 2006, with Polak – who performs under the stage name Lucila Solá – soon embarking on a four-year relationship with Pacino, who Morrone refers to as her stepfather to this day.

Raised in Los Angeles, she was briefly enrolled at the legendary Beverly Hills High – the  school responsible for inspiring ’90s teen series Beverly Hills 90210 thanks to its roll call of famous former students.

She then enrolled in a homeschooling program which gave her the flexibility to travel while working.

Previously she told Vulture that studying at Beverly Hills High School was nothing like the TV show and its depiction of privileged middle-class teenagers.

She said: ‘You don’t have to be a rich kid to go there. It was weird – my parents didn’t raise me like that.

‘Even if they had the money – which they didn’t – I wasn’t getting a $100,000 car for my birthday.

‘So to grow up around kids like that is very disorienting. It’s confusing, and eye-opening for how the world works, to see that kind of money and privilege at 15, 16. But I had to work for my first car.’

The actress and model dated Oscar-winning star Leonardo DiCaprio - who is close friends with Pacino - for five years before ending the relationship in 2022

The actress and model dated Oscar-winning star Leonardo DiCaprio – who is close friends with Pacino – for five years before ending the relationship in 2022

'A love like this': Camila was responding to comments made on her Instagram post from Thursday featuring a gallery photos of Lauren Bacall and Humphrey Bogart

Kisses: Camila posted a slew of romantic snaps of the Hollywood couple

Morrone later hit out at the ongoing criticism of the now 49-year old DiCaprio's taste for younger women in an Instagram post picturing Humphrey Bogarde and his much younger wife Lauren Bacall

Morrone later hit out at the ongoing criticism of the now 49-year old DiCaprio’s taste for younger women in an Instagram post picturing Humphrey Bogarde and his much younger wife Lauren Bacall

Age gap: 'There's so many relationships in Hollywood ¿ and in the history of the world ¿ where people have large age gaps,' she said

Age gap: ‘There’s so many relationships in Hollywood — and in the history of the world — where people have large age gaps,’ she said

As a child of divorce, Morrone (pictured when she was young) moved between her parents' homes and homeschooled for part of her childhood

As a child of divorce, Morrone (pictured when she was young) moved between her parents’ homes and homeschooled for part of her childhood

She is the daughter of Argentine actors Maximo Morrone and Lucila Solá (pictured with Camila as a child)

She is the daughter of Argentine actors Maximo Morrone and Lucila Solá (pictured with Camila as a child)

Morrone also admitted she was reluctant to enter the acting industry after seeing her own parents struggle to put food on the table.

She told the Los Angeles Times: ‘I saw them struggle their whole lives to be financially independent actors, and seeing them go through that, I was kind of turned off to it.

‘There was so much angst around acting, and it was such a topic of conversation — never knowing where your next paycheck is going to come from. I thought: “I’m going to go to college. I’m going to have a normal 9-to-5 job.”

‘And of course, I ended up exactly like them.’

Acting would come later of course, with Marrone initially embarking on what would become a hugely successful modelling career.

And she admits the money she earned while modelling for the likes of Moschino, Sephora and parading catwalks as a Victoria’s Secret Angel helped instill a taste for the finer things in life.

‘I wear Chanel in every capacity,’ she told L’OFFICIEL in May. ‘When I was 16 and got my first paycheck from modelling, I got myself a Chanel purse and I wore it to the ground and still have it, still wear it.’

Her early acting roles included a part in Eli Roth's 2018 thriller Death Wish, in which she starred alongside Elisabeth Shue and Bruce Willis

Her early acting roles included a part in Eli Roth’s 2018 thriller Death Wish, in which she starred alongside Elisabeth Shue and Bruce Willis

The following year she took a starring role in Mickey And The Bear (pictured)

The following year she took a starring role in Mickey And The Bear (pictured)

In 2013 when she got her first movie role in Bukowski, she went to Pacino for advice, and he promptly invited her to his place to read the script.

Two hours later, after they finished the script she asked the veteran star: ‘So what do I do? What is acting? How do I do it? I don’t know how to cry.’

He responded: ‘Just be yourself, if you don’t cry that’s fine, just react to the act, and you’ll be fine… you’re 16, no one cares.’

Further acting roles followed, with Morrone winning parts in 2018 stoner comedy Never Going Back and Eli Roth thriller Death Wish, released the same year with a cast led by Bruce Willis and Elisabeth Shue.

By then her Hollywood credentials had furthered for altogether different reasons, with Morrone already a full year into her relationship with the significantly older Leonardo DiCaprio.

Eyebrows were inevitably raised when they were first seen together at the 70th Cannes Film Festival in 2017, shortly after the Oscar-winner ended his relationship with Danish model Nina Agdal.

The romance was compounded by DiCaprio’s own connection to Pacino – a close friend who would eventually star alongside him in Quentin Tarantino’s 2019 blockbuster One Upon A Time… In Hollywood.

Morrone admitted she was reluctant to enter the acting industry after seeing her own parents struggle to put food on the table

Morrone admitted she was reluctant to enter the acting industry after seeing her own parents struggle to put food on the table

She admits the money she earned while modelling for the likes of Moschino, Sephora and parading catwalks as a Victoria's Secret Angel helped instill a taste for the finer things in life, including a love of Chanel (pictured far right at a Chanel fashion show)

She admits the money she earned while modelling for the likes of Moschino, Sephora and parading catwalks as a Victoria’s Secret Angel helped instill a taste for the finer things in life, including a love of Chanel (pictured far right at a Chanel fashion show)

Initially coy about their relationship – the pair made numerous separate red carpet appearances before confirming the romance – Morrone later hit out at the ongoing criticism of DiCaprio’s taste for younger women in an Instagram post.

Sharing a photo of Humphrey Bogart and his much-younger wife Lauren Bacall, she wrote:  ‘A love like this…

‘My god, people are so mean and full of anger with people that they know nothing about,’ she wrote in her Instagram Stories in response to the controversy.

‘I guess I just hope on this Friday that people learn to live with a little less hatred and place their time and interests elsewhere, because living without hatred feels pretty good.’

Explaining her post in a subsequent interview with the Los Angeles Times, she said: ‘There’s so many relationships in Hollywood — and in the history of the world — where people have large age gaps.

‘I just think anyone should be able to date who they want to date.’

Morrone has now been named as Elizabeth Debicki's replacement in the second series of BBC drama The Night Manager

Morrone has now been named as Elizabeth Debicki’s replacement in the second series of BBC drama The Night Manager

While Tom Hiddleston is returning to the smash hit series, it seems The Crown star will not be returning (Elizabeth and Tom pictured in the series)

While Tom Hiddleston is returning to the smash hit series, it seems The Crown star will not be returning (Elizabeth and Tom pictured in the series)

As COVID-19 swept the globe the couple became closer than ever, with Morrone even moving into the actor’s mansion as Los Angeles was plunged into lockdown.

‘He is usually very independent, spends lots of time with friends. But because of the lockdown, he mostly spent time with Morrone. He loves being with her,’ a source told People at the time.

‘Leo has spent 24/7 with Camila for months at his house.’

That June, DiCaprio made a declaration of love by hiring a 43-metre superyacht at Marina Del Rey. where he hosted a Wester-themed party in honour of her 23rd birthday.

A source told Entertainment Tonight: ‘They are very in love. Camila is his dream girl. She’s young, sweet, simple and it’s easy because she gets along well with his family and he gets along great with hers too.

‘They’ve known each other forever and it just works.

As the pandemic ended and restrictions gradually eased off, the couple were spotted being openly affectionate in public.

DiCaprio was even seen taking the dogs that Morrone had fostered on solo walks, suggesting he considered himself as much a parent to them as she was.

One of the last public sightings came in July 2022 on Malibu Beach, though they were not pictured together at the time.

But just two months later their five year romance was at an end.

‘Leo and Camila ended their relationship over the summer,’ a source confirmed. ‘There are no bad feelings between them. It just came to a natural conclusion.’

The actress also won a starring role in Netflix miniseries Daisy Jones & The Six (pictured: co-stars Camilla Morrone, Sam Clafin and Riley Keough)

The actress also won a starring role in Netflix miniseries Daisy Jones & The Six (pictured: co-stars Camilla Morrone, Sam Clafin and Riley Keough)

Morrone’s portrayal of Camila Alvarez-Dunne landed her a nomination for the Prime Time Emmy Award for ‘Outstanding Supporting Actress In A Limited or Anthology Series or Movie’ category

Just two years later the actress emerged from DiCaprio’s Titanic shaped shadow to claim bigger and better parts – among them a starring role in Netflix miniseries Daisy Jones & The Six.

A roaring success with Netflix subscribers, her role as Camila Alvarez-Dunne earned industry recognition too, with Morrone earning a Best Supporting Actress nomination at the Critics’ Choice Television Awards and winning Breakthrough Actress at the annual Celebration of Cinema and Television.

Morrone’s portrayal of Dunne also landed her a nomination for the Prime Time Emmy Award for ‘Outstanding Supporting Actress In A Limited or Anthology Series or Movie’ category

But she could still win bigger accolades biggest after landing a plum role in BBC drama The Night Manager.

Morrone will fill the shoes previously worn by Elizabeth Debicki, who played leading man Tom Hiddleston’s love interest before winning her role as Diana, Princess of Wales in The Crown.

Camila won a new legion of fans thanks to her starring role in the musical Netflix series

Camila won a new legion of fans thanks to her starring role in the musical Netflix series

A source told The Sun: ‘While many of the big names involved in the first series will be returning for the second, Camila is a sensational new addition.

‘Tom is now eight years older than he was when he first played the leading man in but Camila is the same age that Elizabeth was when she first appeared on the show in 2016.

‘She is 17 years younger than the show’s star. Of course, bosses could have opted for an actress who was now in their 30s or 40s but – much like DiCaprio – they seem to prefer a younger model.’

The new seasons will premiere on BBC One and BBC iPlayer in the UK and globally on Prime Video, in a deal negotiated by FIFTH SEASON, which is handling global distribution of the series.

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