Biographic by Steve McGarry for February 23, 2014
BIOGRAPHIC Steve McGarry Daniel Day-Lewis He is famously selective about the roles he takes, sometimes allowing years to lapse between movies. When he undertakes a project, he has been known to take his research to extraordinary lengths, from spending months in a wheelchair to learning to speak Czech. Oscar-winner Daniel Day-Lewis is eclectic, meticulous and generally regarded as one of the most gifted actors of his generation. He was born in London on April 29, 1957, the son of an actress and a famous poet. Having made his screen debut as a teen with a small role in 1971's "Sunday Bloody Sunday," he studied at the famous Bristol Old Vic Theatre School. Stage and TV work followed, before a small role in 1982's "Gandhi" led to a larger role in 1984's "The Bounty." His career took off in 1985 with starring roles in "My Beautiful Laundrette" and "A Room with a View." He learned Czech for "The Unbearable Lightness of Being," and for his Oscar-winning portrayal of a cerebral palsy sufferer in 1989's "My Left Foot: The Christy Brown Story," he spent the entire shoot confined to a wheelchair. His subsequent work ranged from the action-packed "the Last of the Mohicans" to the romance of "The Age of Innocence" to the gritty drama of "In the Name of the Father," for which he received an Oscar nomination. Following 1997's "The Boxer," Daniel moved to Italy and took a lengthy break, returning to the screen with a brilliant Oscar-nominated performance in 2002's "Gangs of New York." Having made just one more movie in the interim, Daniel exploded onto the screen in late 2007 with "There Will Be Blood," earning a slew of awards, including his second best actor Oscar. His next movie, 2009's musical romance "Nine," was critically panned and poorly received, but still generated significant awards recognition. He then spent a year in preparation for his next role - and his meticulous research was rewarded with the commercial and critical triumph of 2012's "Lincoln." His portrayal of President Abraham Lincoln saw Daniel make cinema history by becoming the first actor to win three best actor Academy Awards. Running true to form, he subsequently announced that he would be taking another sabbatical from acting.