In my mind, there is no debate. Daniel Day-Lewis is the best actor alive. And maybe ever. (We can argue Meryl Streep, of course. But pound-for-pound, Day-Lewis doesn’t have a huge body of work, but all of his performances, even in sub-par films, are transcendent.) The Academy, which, of course, doesn’t always (or maybe even often) get it right, agrees:
Mr. Day-Lewis, 60, the only performer to win three Academy Awards in the best actor category (“My Left Foot,” “There Will Be Blood,” “Lincoln”), has taken sabbaticals before but has never announced a full retirement until now. He has finished filming “Phantom Thread,” written and directed by Paul Thomas Anderson, which is set for release at the end of the year.
Anderson, of course, also directed Day-Lewis in There Will Be Blood. Cannot wait.
After starring as the lead role in 1997’s “The Boxer,” Mr. Day-Lewis disappeared from the screen. It wasn’t until five years later when the reclusive actor was coaxed by Martin Scorsese to star in “Gangs of New York” alongside Leonardo DiCaprio. During that time, he reportedly took up shoemaking in Italy. In 2002, he told The Guardian: “I didn’t really want to be involved with films. I just wanted some time away from it all. I need that quite often.”
Yep, he was a cobbler. Not for a role, for fun. What a fascinating person. I re-watched Lincoln the other night after reading about this. The movie is good, but it has its pacing issues. But Daniel Day-Lewis is fucking amazing in it. He is Abraham Lincoln.
This is Michael Jordan retiring in his prime.