Sharon Stone paid for Leonardo DiCaprio's salary from her own pocket to hire him for her 1995 movie "The Quick and the Dead", the actor has revealed in her memoir "The Beauty of Living Twice".
The book, in which the actor talks about her life and career in Hollywood, was released in the US on Tuesday.
In the memoir, the 63-year-old actor reflects on everything, from her painful childhood in Pennsylvania to films such as erotic thriller "Basic Instinct" and Martin Scorsese's mobster epic "Casino", which had earned her an Academy Award nomination and a Golden Globe award.
"The Quick and the Dead", which was directed by Sam Raimi, marked a major moment in Stone's career as she was also co-producing the film besides headlining it.
It featured Stone as Ellen, a gunfighter who relocates to a rural town in the Old West and clashes with its leader (Gene Hackman) to avenge her father's death. During the course of the movie, she befriends DiCaprio's character, simply called The Kid.
Talking about the movie, Stone wrote in the book that she and her fellow producers auditioned several young actors for the role of The Kid, reported IndieWire.
"This kid named Leonardo DiCaprio was the only one who nailed the audition. In my opinion he was the only one who came in and cried, begging his father to love him as he died in the scene," Stone recalled.
However, the studio TriStar Pictures wasn't keen on hiring DiCaprio, who, despite earning an Oscar nod for "What's Eating Gilbert Grape", was still not much known in Hollywood.
"Why an unknown, Sharon, why are you always shooting yourself in the foot?" came the reply from the studio.
"The studio said if I wanted him so much, I could pay him out of my own salary. So I did," Stone wrote.
Not just DiCaprio, Stone revealed that she had to fight the studio for hiring Raimi as well.
The actor said that Raimi's low-budget horror movies -- "The Evil Dead I" and "Army of Darkness" -- led the studio to believe that he was a "D-movie director".
Stone wrote that she told TriStar that Raimi "would work nearly for free as an enticement" after which the studio hired him.
Talking about her experience as a producer, the actor said, "Getting a producer credit as an actress is often thought of in my business as a 'vanity deal' meaning they pay you for the job but shut the f**k up and stay out of the way." "I won't accept a vanity deal and let them know that upfront. This is illegal, I say, and I like to work within the law. That gets a lot of silence and not a lot of joy on the other end," she added.
Last year, actor Russell Crowe, who featured in "The Quick and the Dead" as Stone's love interest, had said that he owed his career to the "Basic Instinct" star.
During his appearance on Late Night with Seth Meyers, Crowe had revealed that Stone fought hard with the studio to cast him in the movie.
"She was in a sword fight with the male producers on the film, and she put her foot down and said, 'I'm going to hire the person I want to hire as the love interest kind of thing'.
"If it wasn't her for her strength of commitment, I don't know how long it might have been before I got an American movie. I've got a lot to thank her for," Crowe had said.