The three-time Oscar winner leaves behind an unrivaled body of work.
Daniel Day-Lewis has been for a long time considered the best actor in all of his generation and perhaps of all of time. His performances, notably in Lincoln and There Will Be Blood, not only are academic evidence of what is composed of a great performance but also proof positive he was much different than other actors out there. When you look at Day-Lewis’ acting technique, he fully immersed himself into every role where you could not exactly see the real actor behind the performance. It’s a technique called the method, which has been used by other actors such as Christian Bale, to fully ingratiate one into a character. The late Oscar winner Heath Ledger used it in his performance opposite Bale as The Joker in The Dark Knight.
There was no explicit reason for why Day-Lewis was retiring. He was often an actor that was highly sought after and any studio seemed willing to put this master actor in their film. Leslee Dart, the spokeswoman for Day-Lewis, stated he will simply no longer be working as an actor. “Daniel Day-Lewis will no longer be working as an actor,” Dart told Variety. “He is immensely grateful to all of his collaborators and audiences over the many years. This is a private decision and neither he nor his representatives will make any further comment on this subject.”
Day-Lewis has also been known for his performances in Gangs of New York and My Left Foot. In Gangs, he played Bill “The Butcher” Cutting while in My Left Foot, he portrayed writer and artist Christy Brown. He also portrayed a great number of other characters in films such as The Age of Innocence, The Last of The Mohicans and Nine. Currently, Day-Lewis is in production on a film.
He is working once again with There Will Be Blood director Paul Thomas Anderson for the film, Phantom Thread. He will play a dressmaker hired by the upper class and royals of London, England in 1950. It is set to come out this Christmas. This represents a sad day in the world of film. Day-Lewis’ choices for film have always been very selective and in the late 1990s, he seemed to have retired from acting. Reportedly, Gangs of New York director Martin Scorsese got him to return.
Can anyone get him to come back to acting? That’s the question. Some actors such as Gene Hackman have been able to remain in retirement. Yet, you never know. Clint Eastwood has attempted for years to retire from acting and even admits he cannot seem to. Will the acting bug continue in Day-Lewis’ life? You could not imagine he might turn down a dream role and he’s only sixty years of age. While Hollywood will miss the famed actor, the hope continues he may come back to the acting world to grace us with yet another beautiful performance.