By Kevin P. Sullivan
January 10, 2016 at 12:00 PM EST
Paul Drinkwater/Getty Images

Leonardo DiCaprio has won the Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Drama for his role as Hugh Glass in Alejandro González Iñárritu’s revenge tale The Revenant.

“I’ve never had an experience like this in my entire life,” he said in his acceptance speech Sunday, thanking Iñárritu and co-star Tom Hardy in particular.

DiCaprio also took time at the end of his speech to make special mention of the indigenous populations of the world. “It is time that we recognize your history,” he said.

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For much of awards season thus far, the category was considered a three-way race between Michael Fassbender, Eddie Redmayne, and DiCaprio, with no clear favorite emerging out of the guilds and critics associations.

The most popular narrative driving Best Actor considerations was that it was both “time” for DiCaprio to take the gold, and that no other performance demanded as much physically. There’s also his star power, which should never be ignored when predicting the whims of the HFPA, a group that is notorious for honoring celebrity.

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“I was cold basically every day, especially my hands,” DiCaprio told EW. “After almost every take, I couldn’t feel them. There was one particular warming machine on set, which was like an industrial-size dryer with eight black tubes extending out of it. I nicknamed it the octopus. It was my savior.”

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DiCaprio had previously won twice at the Globes, for The Wolf of Wall Street and The Aviator. For a full list of this year’s Golden Globes winners, head here.