On Tuesday, Oscar-winning actor Daniel Day-Lewis announced that he will be retiring from acting. The elusive actor made the statement via his publicist, Leslee Dart. He has not yet specified why exactly he is leaving the business.
Read on for details:
1. His Publicist Issued a Statement on Tuesday
On Tuesday, Day-Lewis’s publicist said in an exclusive statement, “Daniel Day-Lewis will no longer be working as an actor,” his spokeswoman 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.”
2. ‘Phantom Thread’ Will Be His Last Film and Will Be Released in December
Phantom Thread focuses on the high-fashion industry, and was directed by Paul Thomas Anderson, the man behind There Will Be Blood. The film is set to be released in Dec. 25.
The movie also stars Lesley Manville, Camilla Rutherford, Vicky Krieps, and Richard Graham.
3. He Is Known for Taking 5-Year Gaps Between Roles
Day-Lewis is known for being extremely reclusive. Since 1998, he hasn’t acted in too many films, and it hasn’t been uncommon for him to take five-year gaps between roles. In the late ’90s, he even took an apprenticeship as a shoemaker in Florence, Italy, studying under famed master cobbler Stefano Bemer.
Though he isn’t particularly talkative when it comes to what he calls his “slothful” periods, the actor has revealed bits and pieces over time about how he spends his time when he isn’t filming. In an interview with the U.K. Guardian in 2008, Day-Lewis said:
My life as it is away from movie set is a life where I follow my curiosity just as avidly as when I am working. It is with a very positive sense that I keep away from the work for a while. It has always seemed natural to me that that in turn should help me in the work that I do.
4. He Made His Film Debut in 1971 in ‘Sunday Bloody Sunday’
At age 14, Day-Lewis made his film debut in Sunday Bloody Sunday, in which he played a vandal. The role is uncredited. The film, written by Penelope Gilliatt and directed by John Schlesinger, follows a young bisexual artist (played by Head) and his relationships with a female consultant and male Jewish doctor. The movie was released in 1971, and was critically acclaimed– it currently has a 92% on Rotten Tomatoes, and was nominated for a slew of Academy Awards, including Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress, and Best Original Screenplay.
His next film didn’t come until 1982, when he played Colin in Gandhi, directed by Richard Attenborough. In the late 1970s, he was admitted to the Bristol Old Vic Theater School, which he attended for three years.
5. He Has Been Nominated for Five Oscars and Has Won Three
Day-Lewis has been nominated for five Oscars and has won three– in 1990 for My Left Foot, in 2007 for There Will Be Blood, and in 2012 for Lincoln. He received a nomination in 1993 for In the Name of the Father and Martin Scorsese’s 2002 film Gangs of New York, which earned him a BAFTA.
Known for his method acting skills, Day Lewis is fully immersive in his discipline. On the set of My Left Foot, he remained in a wheelchair for the entirety of shooting. He also learned Czech for The Unbearable Lightness of Being, according to Rolling Stone.