Tom Hardy is one of the most wonderfully audacious and unapologetic actors Hollywood has to offer. He has no qualms about sharing his Dubsmashes on the Internet; taking his beloved dog to a movie premiere; and chasing down a teenage thief who unluckily happened to cross his path. As for those sexy photos that he posted online before he was famous? Why should he regret those?
“I’ve got no shame about my MySpace photos,” the actor said several years back, “especially the one of me in my underpants which is a glorious photo of a man in his natural habitat. . . . In America, they say ‘you should be ashamed of this,’ but I’m actually not remotely ashamed.”
Knowing all of these delightful details about Tom Hardy, are you surprised that the actor just paid permanent homage to his former co-star Leonardo DiCaprio by getting a tattoo that is clearly visible in a T-shirt? Probably not.
Granted, Hardy did not dream up the tattoo himself. It is the consequence of a bet that the Revenant stars made around the 2016 Oscar nominations. DiCaprio was so certain that Hardy would be nominated—and Hardy believed so much that he wouldn’t be—that they made a gentleman’s wager: if Hardy was nominated, he would have to get a tattoo of DiCaprio’s choice, and vice versa. Hardy was nominated and DiCaprio promptly designed the tattoo.
“He wrote, in this really shitty handwriting: ‘Leo knows everything,’” Hardy told Esquire in 2016. “Ha! I was like, ‘O.K., I’ll get it done, but you have to write it properly.’”
And now, dear readers, Hardy has gone ahead and made good on his end of the bargain. He could have inked those three words on a more covert body part. But Tom Hardy, being Tom Hardy, went full bore—getting the three words etched into his bicep for all of eternity. (Hardy does not seem like the type to LaserAway his Oscar-bet skin art.) The tattoo was caught by a photographer in San Francisco and posted on Instagram Sunday.
DiCaprio has not yet publicly acknowledged the homage.
Last year, Hardy toldVanity Fair about the unfairness of the bet.
“Fucker,” Hardy joked of DiCaprio. “He would never get a tattoo if he lost that bet! It was just one-way. I’m covered in shit tattoos anyway, so it doesn’t make any difference to me. If I got a big bold ‘Leo’ right across my thigh or across my face. It’s just that, isn’t it? You bet a tattoo, you lose. That’s what happens.”
The Leonardo DiCaprio etching joins Hardy’s many other tattoos including a Chinese dragon, a Madonna and child, and a Buddha with an AK47, and a London skyline. We hope they live in harmony together on that dog-loving, Dubsmash-creating, thief-catching creature that is Hardy.
Now, which co-stars this Oscar season do you think are most likely to make a similar bet? Frances McDormand and Sam Rockwell? Sally Hawkins and Richard Jenkins?
Get Vanity Fair’s HWD NewsletterSign up for essential industry and award news from Hollywood.Julie MillerJulie Miller is a Senior Hollywood writer for Vanity Fair’s website.