And you already thought 2017 sucked. It's about to get a lot worse. Daniel Day-Lewis just announced, via his spokesperson, that he is retiring from acting. No reason has been given. In a statement obtained by Variety, spokeswoman Leslee Dart stated:
Daniel Day-Lewis will no longer be working as an actor. 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.
So this is what it feels like when someone drinks your milkshake? It's horrible. The idea that we won't have a new Daniel Day-Lewis performance to look forward to after 2017 is devastating. The man has been, without question, one of the most consistent, challenging, dependable and surprising actors of this current generation. And he's a young man. At 60 years of age, he's just now transitioning into a seasoned veteran stage, where character actors often do their best work. This isn't like losing Gene Hackman in his 80s. Daniel Day-Lewis has decades of potential projects that will go unfulfilled. I am devastated thinking about that vast loss.
Daniel Day-Lewis belongs to the illustrious group of film actors who have claimed three Oscars. All three of Day-Lewis' come in the Best Actor category, which is a first (some of this peers, such as Meryl Streep or Jack Nicholson, picked up trophies in the Supporting categories). What is the definitive Daniel Day-Lewis performance? Most likely would go right to one of the turns that won him an Oscar, be it Abraham Lincoln in Steven Spielberg's biopic, or the oil man Daniel Plainview in There Will Be Blood. To me, it's Bill "The Butcher," the terrifying kingpin DDL played in Martin Scorsese's underrated Gangs of New York. A masterful and towering performance in a beautiful, sprawling mess of a movie.
If there's one thing that somewhat softens the blow caused by Daniel Day-Lewis' unexpected retirement from the acting community, it's that he has one more film left to arrive, and it's coming later this year. Day-Lewis will collaborate with There Will Be Blood director Paul Thomas Anderson on Phantom Thread (did we know that was the name of this movie?), a drama set in the world of London fashion in the 1950s. In addition to Daniel Day-Lewis, the ensemble for Phantom Thread includes Lesley Manville, Camilla Rutherford and Richard Graham.
But how on Earth will we be expected to head into Phantom Thread knowing that it's going to be Daniel Day-Lewis' final movie? Bring tissues. And vote in our poll.