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You will notice three distinct dimples. Here, here and here. Now...if I was holding the skull of an Isaac Newton or Galileo, these three dimples would be found in the area of the skull most associated with creativity. But this is the skull of Old Ben. And in the skull of Old Ben, unburdened by genius, these three dimples exist in the area of the skull most associated with servility. Now bright boy, I will admit you are pretty clever. But if I took this hammer here and I bashed in your skull with it, you would have the same three dimples in the same place...AS OLD BEN.
~ Calvin Candie to Django and Dr. Schultz.
I insist.
~ Candie to Dr. King Schultz, while trying to convince the latter to finalize a slave deal. Also his last words.

Calvin Candie is the main antagonist in the 2012 Quentin Tarantino film Django Unchained. He is the Francophile owner of the Candyland plantation.

He was portrayed by Leonardo DiCaprio, who also played King Louis XIV in The Man in the Iron Mask, Frank Abagnale Jr. in Catch Me If You Can, Jay Gatsby in The Great Gatsby and Jordan Belfort in The Wolf of Wall Street.


Calvin Candie is a Mississippi slave owner who owns a large plantation known as Candieland. Django Freeman's wife Broomhilda was taken to Candieland after being sold to Candie by her and Django's former slave master, who tried to distance them from one another as punishment for being married.

Candie is a detestable individual who views his slaves harshly as his property and participates in a blood sport known as Mandingo fighting, forcing male slaves to fight to the death for money. In one brutal instance, Candie has a slave mauled to death by vicious dogs because he tried to escape having to participate in any further Mandingo fights, costing Candie some $500. His female slaves are often forced into prostitution. He sees people of color as beneath him and little more than property, and Candie displays a disdain for people who are critical of slavery, referring to them as "n*gger lovers". The depths of his depravity are seen when he gives Django and Dr. Schultz a lecture on his belief that people of color are biologically inferior using pseudoscience. He claims that other races' supposed lower intelligence, along with submissiveness is the result of a series of dimples inside the skull, as Candie examines the skull of a deceased slave.

Candie appears to be quite close to his head slave, Stephen, and places a great deal of trust in him. Stephen immediately takes issue with Django and seems unable to comprehend the idea of Django being a free man. Stephen is almost as twisted as Candie; appearing to almost take joy with the slaughter and torment of his people. He is notorious for constantly sucking up to Candie, doing things such as repeating and agreeing with everything Candie says. Stephen takes notice of Broomhilda and Django's interaction and uses his relation to Broomhilda to intimidate and question her about him.

After discovering the truth about them, Stephen explains to Candie that Django and Dr. Schultz's goal was to purchase Broomhilda. Upon hearing this, Candie loses his calm demeanor and reveals his sick and devious nature by threatening to beat Broomhilda to death with a hammer if Dr. Schultz does not pay $12,000 for her. After signing Broomhilda over, Candie then tries to convince Schultz to shake his hand to seal their transaction, otherwise he will have Broomhilda shot on sight. Disgusted by the slave owner's behavior, Dr. Schultz appears to concede to Candie's wish, only to shoot him in the heart with a concealed pistol, killing him almost instantly. Unfortunately, Candie's death proved to be Schultz's downfall as Schultz ends up being killed by Candie's bodyguard Butch Pooch; even when an angry Django manages to kill Butch and many of Candie's men, he is forced to surrender when Stephen gets Billy Crash and Candie's remaining men to hold Broomhilda as hostage.

Separated from his wife again and having lost his dear mentor, Django is sentenced by Candie's sister Lara Lee Candie-Fitzwilly to be working to death at Lequint Dickey Mining Company while she and the rest of the men attend Candie's funeral. However, Django frees himself and returns to Candie's estate to free Broomhilda. Following the return of Lara and the men, Django kills them all while setting several slaves free in the process. Django then blows up the mansion with dynamite, killing Stephen and leaving Candie's legacy in complete vain.


Candie is shown to act on the negative southern stereotypes, as seen with his sadistic racism and his implied crush on his sister, Lara Lee Candie-Fitzwilly. Despite his fearsome and opprobrious reputation, he is not especially shrewd or intelligent, as he did not know his favorite writer, Alexandre Dumas, was black, nor does he know how to speak French despite insisting on being addressed as Monsieur. It is also implied that he doesn't know how to read or write. Nevertheless, Candie holds a high opinion of himself, considering himself a worldly and sophisticated person, an expert on French culture and Phrenology, which has since been proven to be a pseudo-science. Despite being externally charming, Candie has a ferocious temper, especially when he thinks he has been made a fool of, as in the climax of his ordeal with Django and Dr. Schultz, he exploded with rage and held them all at gunpoint, physically slamming his hand on the table to express his fury. Despite his negative traits, he is good friends with his oldest house slave Stephen; even entrusting him to sign checks and a doting brother to his sister Lara. Maybe a little too doting. Candie is also extremely cold-hearted, sadistic, and cruel, taking incredible delight in watching two black men viciously fight right in front of him, and cheering when one gouges out the other's eyes. He also casually orders one of his slaves to be devoured alive by dogs.



  • Although Candie is the main antagonist of the film, he was killed off and replaced by Stephen in the climax.
  • Candie is regarded as one of the most evil characters that Leonardo DiCaprio has ever played. In fact, even DiCaprio himself began to feel uncomfortable playing the role.
  • Candie's plantation, Candieland, appears to have a well-known reputation throughout the slave community. When it is discovered that Broomhilda is at Candieland, Django tells Dr. Schultz that "All slaves know about Candieland."
  • Leonardo DiCaprio was considered for the role of Hans Landa in Inglorious Basterds, but it eventually fell to Christoph Waltz due to his German background.
  • It is mentioned at one point during the film that Candie is illiterate.
  • In the film, Candie's dialogue contains 152 uses of the N-word.
  • It has been speculated that Calvin killed Lara's husband due to his feelings for her.
  • Quentin Tarantino stated that Candie is his least favorite character that he has created.
  • The scene where Candie is laughing has become a popular internet meme.


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