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In July 2010, Christopher Nolan delivered an existential thrill ride with Inception. Leonardo DiCaprio led the cast, which also included Tom Hardy, Cillian Murphy, Marion Cotillard, Elliot Page, Ken Watanabe, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt.

Packed with action, dream metaphysics, and drama, the film is often considered one of Nolan’s masterpieces. It also stands among DiCaprio’s finest work. DiCaprio’s Dom took his team on dream expeditions around the world, but the film centered on his case with Robert Fischer (Murphy). Out of all the dangerous and intense scenes in the movie, one of them made DiCaprio feel like he was in a music video.

Leonardo Di Caprio at 'Inception' premiere at Grauman's Chinese Theatre in 2010
Leonardo DiCaprio | Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

Leonardo DiCaprio felt like part of a boy band in ‘Inception’

Inception’s twisty storylines happen inside and outside the dreamscape, but the last kick happened in a fortress that Fischer built. Shot in Calgary, the snowy mountain scenes tied into the film’s climax. When the gang appeared outside Fischer’s fort, they donned thick snowsuits and brandished weapons. That fact was not lost on DiCaprio.

He and Page interviewed each other for MovieFone back in 2010, and they joked about their costumes. Page asked whether he felt like he was in a Backstreet Boys music video.

“I kind of felt like we were part of a gigantic boy band, and we were on location on a snowy mountaintop,” DiCaprio chuckled.

DiCaprio described why the mountain scene was difficult

On top of wearing the protective snowsuits, DiCaprio and the rest of the cast had to endure the conditions on top of the mountain. They shot parts of the film during winter in Canada, and the snowfall was both serendipitous and challenging. It made things colder, but also more authentic.

“Those were difficult days because … I remember being on top of that mountain as a matter of fact, and we had shortness of breath,” DiCaprio recalled.

“We had to do some very long dialogue sequences, and we were all getting kind of a bit queasy, and we had lightness of the head. But to fit into those suits was something that was very locked in to Chris Nolan’s imagination. It’s something he’d been thinking about for a very long time. And I think it was very much a leap of faith on all of our parts to jump into those white snowsuits.”

DiCaprio added that he thought it paid off for the film. He and Page laughed about the suits, and they both admitted they weren’t used to wearing that type of clothing on or off camera.

Snow fortress shot in real mountain backdrop

Nolan’s director of photography suggested they film in the Calgary mountain region after he previously shot a commercial there. The production team constructed the fortress from scratch near an old ski resort.

All the mountains are real, and the cold ate them up. A Vudu behind-the-scenes video reveals that the film crew had to wear snowsuits too.


‘Inception’ Used High-Pressure Nitrogen for Explosion Scenes to Look Surreal

These particular action-filled Inception scenes did not use CGI, but they did use small, special explosives to create the avalanches. Stream the film and the one boy band moment on HBO Max.