Mark Wahlberg has only one acting Oscar nomination, and it was for his supporting role in Martin Scorsese’s The Departed.
One would think the offer to work with Scorsese, Leonardo DiCaprio, Jack Nicholson and Matt Damon would be enough for Wahlberg, but it wasn’t. He didn’t want to just have a supporting role. He didn’t feel it was right for him, so he straight up rejected Scorsese, which of course pissed off Wahlberg’s agent.
“Wahlberg remembered Scorsese reacting to his rejection of the film by staying silent for a minute and saying ‘ok.’ It only took five minutes for Wahlberg’s agent to call back and chastise him for turning down an icon like Scorsese. ‘What the fuck?’ Wahlberg said his agent asked him. ‘Just go talk to [Scorsese].’ Despite Wahlberg’s resistance, Scorsese and the actor’s agent knew the part was the right choice and concocted a plan to get Wahlberg to see it for himself.”
They sent Wahlberg on a plane to meet with Scorsese face-to-face. Mark read the script again and declined again, this time with a bit of an attitude.
“I read the script again, and I was pretty angry and I said again I wasn’t going to do it. Marty told me, ‘Look at this part, look at what you get to do with all these people.’”
Mark thought about it some more and asked Scorsese if he’d be able to improvise, Scorsese assured him he’d be free to do whatever the hell he wanted, which convinced Mark to take the role. And it’s a good thing he did, ’cause like we said, that’s his only acting Oscar nomination.