Leonardo DiCaprio was involved in a mid-air scare when the plane he was flying on was forced to make an emergency landing on Sunday (21.11.10).

The 'Inception' actor was on a commercial flight to Moscow, Russia, when one of the aircraft's engines shut down, forcing the plane to return to JFK International Airport in New York City.

A statement released by the 36-year-old actor said he "wishes to commend the actions of the pilot and flight crew in bringing the plane to a safe landing".

The Hollywood star was among 193 passengers and 11 crew members on the Delta Air Lines 767 flight which reported trouble soon after take-off. It returned to The Departure airport after dumping fuel over the Atlantic Ocean.

Crew initially reported an engine fire but this was ruled out upon landing.

Despite the scare, Leonardo happily signed autographs for airline staff when the aircraft had safely touched down in New York.

A fellow Passenger told UsMagazine.com: "Leonardo signed autographs for all the crew members when they landed."

It is believed the 36-year-old actor was travelling to Russia to attend the Tiger Summit - a four-day meeting to discuss ways to prevent the extinction of tigers, held by Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin - in St. Petersburg when the incident occurred.

Passengers were put onto a later flight to Moscow on Sunday night.