Fact Check: Actor Leonardo DiCaprio will be portraying Martin Luther King in an upcoming film?

Here is the Claim:

Actor Leonardo DiCaprio will be portraying Martin Luther King in an upcoming film.

True or False?

False.

Back Story:

On 7 April 2014, the News Nerd website wrote an article asserting that not only would Leonardo DiCaprio (an unlikely choice) be playing civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr. in an upcoming biopic, but that the (white) actor would, to the ire and offense of many, be essaying that role in blackface:

To say that Leonardo DiCaprio is simply a good actor would be a gross understatement, given the remarkable resume of award-winning performances he’s given throughout his illustrious career. But his acting chops alone are not enough to spare him from the flack he’ll receive from his latest movie role. Reports have surfaced that Leo has been cast by Oliver Stone to play Civil Rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in DreamWorks’ not yet titled MLK biopic.Criticism of the casting choice has not stemmed from concern about whether he’s capable of tackling the role, but rather from the blatant disregard of the many black actors who were passed up for the coveted role.

Many readers soon mistook the News Nerd article for a reporting of real news. However, News Nerd‘s stock in trade is publishing fabricated spoofs, such as reports that a new Ebola vaccine only works on white people and that Michael Vick was attacked by a pit bull. As The News Nerd site’s disclaimer states, all of their material is satirical in nature:

The accounts posted on The News Nerd are for entertainment purposes only. The stories may mimic articles found in the headlines, but rest assured they are purely satirical.
As it is Martin Luther King Jr. day Today, this story is circulating again. Don’t be fooled.
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