A Russian man with a strange resemblance to an overweight Leonardo DiCaprio is spending a month trying to remake himself more closely in to the Hollywood actor’s image.
Roman Burtsev,33,was first dubbed as the "Fat Leonardo DiCaprio" earlier this year when Russian social media spotted him.
Burtsev lives in a small apartment in the town of Podolsk located just outside Moscow, where he works as a technician for a local emergency services. But since January, media in the country, have declared Burtsev to be DiCaprio's heavier "Russian twin," after photos of him looking like a pudgier version of the star.
A local TV station has picked him up and launched a reality show-- "Romance with DiCaprio"-- that promises to help Burtsev transform himself into something closer to the six-time-Oscar nominee.
So far during the show he has been given voice classes, seen a dietitian and been taken around a smart supermarket. In another episode, women waited in line to be photographed being held by Burtsev while they pretended to be Kate Winslet standing on the bow of mock Titanic.
The show sets Burtsev up in what it calls "psychological challenges"--in one, the DiCaprio look-a-like is sent out onto the street to beg strangers for money, the presenter says to teach him how to attract more wealth into his life. The show has also promised to find him love--like his famously bachelor doppelganger, Burtsev is also unmarried-- taking him on a (thus far unsuccessful) series of karaoke and ice-skating dates.
Russia’s cinema industry has also taken a minor interest, inviting him to attend Russia’s equivalent of the Oscars.
Burtsev has said people used to tell him he looked like DiCaprio but that it had never really led to much before. “It doesn’t really bother me, but they don’t give me any bonuses for it,” he told the Russian newspaper, Komsomolskaya Pravda before he was offered the TV show.
The real DiCaprio has claimed to have Russian roots-- he says two of his grandparents were born in the country and recently expressed an interest in playing Vladimir Putin. In January, a Russian film studio suggested that DiCaprio should play the soviet leader, Lenin, prompting protests from a local Communist party branch.
Burtsev has said as far as he knows he has no relation to the actor, but told Komsomolskaya Pravda, he would now ask his parents.