Shocker! Daniel Day-Lewis Quits Acting (EXCLUSIVE)

Three-time Oscar winner Daniel Day-Lewis, widely considered one of the preeminent actors of his generation, is retiring from acting, Variety has learned.

The 60-year-old star, who has played presidents, writers, and gang leaders in a career that has spanned four decades, has one final film awaiting release, an untitled drama set in the world of high fashion. It is scheduled to hit theaters on December 25, 2017 and reunites him with Paul Thomas Anderson, who directed Day-Lewis to a best actor Oscar in 2007’s “There Will Be Blood.” Day-Lewis intends to help promote the movie, according to a person familiar with his plans.

He did not give a reason for his retirement. In a statement, Day-Lewis’ spokeswoman, Leslee Dart, confirmed the news: “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. ”

Related

Lincoln Movie

Daniel Day-Lewis: His 12 Best Films

Day-Lewis is the only performer to ever win three best actor Oscars. He was honored for the title role in Steven Spielberg’s “Lincoln,” for his turn as a rapacious oil man in “There Will Be Blood,” and for his performance as writer and artist Christy Brown in “My Left Foot.” He earned two other Academy Award nominations for “Gangs of New York” and “In the Name of the Father.”

Day-Lewis has been praised for his shape-shifting acting and versatility. He is known for going to extreme lengths for his performances, frequently remaining in character off-screen. He has also starred in musicals (“Nine”), adventure epics (“The Last of the Mohicans“), and period dramas (“The Age of Innocence”).

The method master once learned Czech to play a philandering doctor in “The Unbearable Lightness of Being,” listened to Eminem records to channel rage in “Gangs of New York,” and confined himself to a wheelchair for “My Left Foot” to play Brown, who had cerebral palsy.

Day-Lewis, who is the son of poet Cecil Day-Lewis and English actress Jill Balcon, made his screen debut at the age of 14 in a bit part in 1971’s “Sunday, Bloody Sunday.” He first gained attention on the stage and on television before dazzling critics in 1985 with the one-two punch of “My Beautiful Laundrette” and “A Room With a View,” convincingly playing a street tough and an upper class Edwardian.

Although he has remained in high demand, Day-Lewis is also known as being extremely selective, often waiting years between projects. In the late ’90s and early aughts he appeared to give up acting for a while, reportedly working as a cobbler before Martin Scorsese convinced him to return to the screen for “Gangs of New York.”

Day-Lewis has three children and is married to writer and director Rebecca Miller.

Filed Under:

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 356

Leave a Reply

356 Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

  1. mohamad says:

    He is an amazing actor. I loved him in his early movie “Last of the Mohicans”. But recently i heared a news that he will come back. is that right?

  2. iamtavel says:

    Daniel Day-Lewis has 29 titles to his name…Samuel L. Jackson currently has 177. Know why? Because he accepts every offer that fits into his schedule. Know why? Because he actually likes acting. He likes playing weird roles, in bad movies, and in unappreciated gems. He’s an actor. Daniel Day-Lewis is a self-important jerk who thinks he’s better than everyone else in the industry because he’s so picky with his parts. Great, congratulations, but you’re not the gift to humanity that you think you are. You are no better than Jackson just because you limit your career to one film every thousand years. Goodbye, but do leave quickly. No need to study how professional leavers leave for a year before actually doing it yourself.

  3. Anne O. Tate says:

    A gifted actor. And I’m sure he will retire. Until he comes out of retirement.

  4. DFilm says:

    Brilliant man, will be missed, hope he reconsiders.

    The photo in the article reminds me of a Gangs of NY scene; Bill The Butcher greasily smiles his ‘fox in the henhouse’ grin and, without missing a beat, taps the tip of a butcher knife onto his glass eyeball a few times with that sickening clink..

  5. Dylan says:

    lmao @ all the deranged rightwingers who apparently have no interest in Hollywood (many clearly have no idea who DDL – widely regarded as one of the greatest modern actors in cinema – is) yet are wasting their time at an entertainment industry site…screeching about how they don’t care about movies or actors or any of it. If you don’t care, why are you here? I don’t particularly care about architecture, so I don’t spend my time lurking on architecture sites whining about how much architecture sucks (seriously, the idea that most of the comments come from actual grown adults sends a shudder down my spine). Get a life. DDL has always conducted himself quietly and respectfully and lived a private, low-key life off-camera, and he has more talent in his pinky finger than what most of you spiteful, miserable people have throughout your entire body.

  6. Danial Day Lewis will be missed on the screen. He is an amazing actor. I have enjoyed his movies for a

  7. Joe Geist says:

    Come back to the stage, one more time.

  8. Bill B. says:

    What a loss if he sticks to his guns. I remember very well when My Beautiful Laundrette & A Room With a View came out around the same time. I lived in NYC and everyone was saying, who is this guy?! These two roles couldn’t have been more different. His versatility was staggering.

  9. Kathy says:

    I have to admit I haven’t watched but three of his movies but I do think he is a great actor. The projects he picked just weren’t to my taste but obviously they were great films. I loved him in his early movie “Last of the Mohicans”. I’ve watched it many times over the years. I have always thought he was an eccentric but interesting person.

  10. Slyisthecat says:

    Why does anyone do anything? Because that’s what they have chosen. Still, I’d like to see more of his roles. In my time I’ve never seen anyone as good as DDL.

  11. Sandy says:

    Good for him! Wonder who will be new MI6 will be. He deserves a nice long quit. Much happiness to you Daniel!

  12. Lars says:

    Declaring / confessing, though certainly with neither intention nor forethought, but I do believe I have never had the inclination nor desire to ever see one of DDL’s films, including fucking left feet BS.

    So, who the fuck cares?
    Good riddance to bad rubbish!

    • JustSoYouKnow says:

      Congratulations on proving the replacement of boxed buttered popcorn with feedbag grass and oats was a wise choice made around 2008.

  13. Bony Hurdle says:

    I remember when Anthony Hopkins said the same thing years ago. And Steven Soderbergh ‘confirmed’ back in 2013 that Side Effects would be his final feature film, yet he’s got one coming out shortly and a new one just announced.
    Why don’t they just say “No idea” when people ask what their next project will be?

  14. BB says:

    Funny, I never would read a story about anyone retiring if I didn’t have a clue who it was.

    Tell me, what made you decide to read the story about a man you never heard of and then take the time to comment? Me thinks you are FOS an know exactly who he is.

  15. Chef D says:

    I am retiring from reading stories about DDL.

  16. sailordude says:

    Trump Derangement Syndrome is real. Here’s to his recovery, reality.

  17. Mitch Rapp says:

    Retiring again. Until another good role comes up.

  18. aubreyfarmer says:

    Could it be that he finally developed a sense of morality and can’t bear watching the cabal of pedophiles that run Hollywood destroy the lives of hundreds of children?

  19. Canes58 says:

    at 60 he has lesser years to enjoy life, so why not retire and spend time with family and friends. he expends a lot of energy in parts he plays as he becomes that person. i read in gangs of new york he actually became cutter the butcher and the crew was scared of him! that’s what he does best. that takes a lot out of you mentally. you are a great actor and enjoy the rest of your life!

  20. KC Martinez says:

    BFD! I hope that my life is able to continue. Over, and over and over, we have to hear about celebrities and movie stars retiring, shortly after they sign on to other projects! It’s a means to gain grounds for a lackluster status. So sad and who cares.

  21. Noah says:

    Sounds like a truly grounded man to me, as Rod Stewart sang in one of his songs “Don’t let the flashboys turn your head.” I guess we will have to see whether this pans out, but I am really impressed that he knows himself well enough to separate himself from his job. RARE in acting.

    • Slyisthecat says:

      If you really don’t know, watch “There will be blood”. Fascinating tale and everyone in it are outstanding

  22. TouParish says:

    Strange, I thought with his talent acting was just a hobby. Can you ‘quit’ a hobby?

    • Canes58 says:

      sure! when your finances are set and your 60 why not enjoy whats left of your life! he was the greatest part actor of our time because he actually became that person! in gangs of new york he actually became will cutter the butcher scaring every one on the set! enjoy retirement you earned it!

  23. L Garou says:

    There will be tears..

  24. James Dunham says:

    It’s ok if Daniel wants to quit…..it doesn’t matter to me because I haven’t seen any of his miserable work.

  25. Tom says:

    quitting films? You mean like Joaquin Phoenix did?

    • abroad1 says:

      “Quitting acting “as an actor ” ??? what the h*ll does that mean ? I never even think of him when acting is mentioned, he was good but there are so many who are ..

  26. Banafsheh Zand says:

    Good on him! I respect him for having made that very measured decision. He made lots of money, played some INCREDIBLY memorable and NOTABLE parts and he has a passion for other things that he could and should pursue. I wish him every success, health and happiness. He’s a truly special individual and it shines right through his acting.

  27. Michael Connelly says:

    Last of the Mohican’s to many his most splendid work, the beautiful haunting sound track, the love in that movie, the facing of death on the cliff, the selflessness of a friendship realized, omg what a movie.
    What an actor.

  28. Brad says:

    For you Trump supporters calling him a leftist, how exactly do you know what his political beliefs are? As far as I know he has never discussed his political beliefs.

  29. Joe Dickly says:

    Advertising ploy. You’ll be sure to go watch the film now that you know it’ll be his last. Blah blah blah whatever..who cares?

  30. Jim Kisco says:

    Last of the Mohicans was his best film, outstanding…..Wish he could play more historical figures in american history….
    Maybe he could partner up with Ken Burns….Ideas = Thomas Jefferson, Vincent Van Gough, Marconi,
    or maybe he could run for Congress…………

  31. lbjack says:

    A big loss. One of the very greats. But Hollywood is full of talent and looks, needing only a script and producer, to replace Day-Lewis. Huge audiences still want content, and Hollywood is still where the business of movies is.

  32. Jeb says:

    I will not find you!

    Who really cares? I think he probably being offer jobs at this point to sell life insurance or life alert commercials.

    Enjoy your retirement.

  33. Nancy Briwn says:

    DDL is the only *male* performer to win three best actor Oscars. Katherine Hepburn won four..

    You might want to edit (correct) your comment in article.

  34. When the concert of the frogs prevail
    Larks and nightingales choose not to sing,

  35. T says:

    Dear Mr. Day-Lewis, I don’t blame you. A true thespian, such as yourself, has little choice due to the cookie-cutter goose-step “propaganda placement” required by “Dear Leader Hollywood”. Take back the National Endowment for the Arts and make it about art–not politics. Writers are left with good scripts being turned down because they are not agenda-oriented, without that political lean which has turned the entertainment industry (all forms) into a tin-sounding metal speaker attached to a barbed wired metal pole. There is no imagination anymore in entertainment. Only predictable messaging to the audience. Is this brainwashing? Maybe. But for those who still remember true entertainment, the kind that gave you goosebumps, and not thoughts of goose-stepping, the fact that you are never going to act again–just know–there are still people out here who still are capable of feeling heartbroken. The best to you and all you do. As much as you are starved, perhaps, for a good script–just know, there are many a good writer out here starving too–starving because good scripts are rejected.

  36. Robert Graw says:

    ….and then there were 3(actors worth watching)

  37. IT--//--IT says:

    INTEL RUN Hollywood runs for the EX–ITs
    —————————- – – as the public gets WISE !
    —————————————————– – – to INTEL RUN Hollywood !
    ——————————————- – – and its decades STALE
    ——————————————————————— – – franchise slum ‘values’.

  38. Schlomo Herschkowitz says:

    He’s perhaps the greatest living method actor.
    Once he retires there will still be great actors.

  39. lj says:

    lincoln may have been understated, but i thought it was magnificent. one of the few portrayals that made me feel as if i understood the man himself, even knew him. literally forget it is an actor playing him,IMO

  40. Eric Wilson says:

    Not true, Kathrine Hepburn has won 4 Oscars and the most nominations. Nobody proofs anymore…

    • Sly S. says:

      “Nobody proofs anymore…”
      Including you, Eric. The article states “Day-Lewis is the only performer to ever win three best actor Oscars.” Hepburn won four best actress Oscars.

    • Nancy Briwn says:

      I believe Meryl Streep has the most Best Actorress nominations.

    • Rafael de los Rios Boulton says:

      They mentioned 3 Academy Awards for a Male. It is a record.

  41. mjweir0317 says:

    It’s a shame he didn’t quit before he started chewing scenery and generally giving the same self-serving ridiculous performance every time he stepped in the front of the camera. One of the most overrated actors of his generation. I won’t miss him a bit.

  42. MovieBill says:

    what odd comments on here…”never heard of him…” or “why does it matter?” isn’t this Variety? showbiz magazine? who are these trolls? anyway, this guy is of supreme importance in the entertainment industry. probably the finest living actor. i have a beef, tho, with the joker who wrote the comments on the photo essay on his greatest films. he called THE CRUCIBLE “overcooked” and how it wasn’t a successful film. on the contrary, it was glorious. reviews were uniformly terrific. it just didn’t play at the box office. despite that, it won Paul Scofield a NAFTA, Joan Allen was nominated for an Oscar (as was Arthur Miller) and Day-Lewis himself counts it as his favorite of all his films.

  43. John Galt says:

    His best film has Last of the Mohicans period…..NOW…..how did all of you pathetic, lunatic lib-turds like that election in Georgia last night?!! I thought it was GREAT and show’s just how much pull all of the supposed “big stars” actually have with real people which is…..ZERO!!

  44. ida tarbell says:

    The Press isn’t writing about it yet, but the days of big time actors are temporarily past, perhaps never to return. China has seized the theater box office by growing seats in their own country and buying theater chains in the US and Europe. Brangelina, now broken up, can’t operate in such a low octane world. George Clooney is too old, as are Lewis and Brad Pitt, to interest the millenials. The actors that have owned Hollywood since Steven Soderbergh emerged in 1989, are no longer delivering the box office, H’wood is adopting the big spectacle Marvel and other franchises mantle, at least temporarily. Europe, Britain and even Israel, are releasing humanist pics to fill the gap. So far those’ve had little impact. I believe the Tent Pole and franchise films will collapse too, yet this year, forcing Hollywood to hire stars and humanist scripts to fill the gap.

    • Don Hollway says:

      I’d go a step further than that and say that the days of live actors are numbered. Computer animation can already render an onscreen human indistinguishable from real person, and it’s only going to get better and cheaper. Why pay an “actor” ridiculous millions to throw onset tantrums and more millions for expensive sets, when the same money will pay animators to create many ideal characters and fictional worlds, all realistic, from the ground up? All you really need is a voice-over, and I bet computers will eventually do that, too. One day our descendants will look back and wonder why we ever went so bat-crap crazy over movie stars.

      Don’t get me wrong — it’s not going to happen tomorrow. Studios and the movie industry still depend on stars, with all their off-screen antics, to generate drama, draw audiences, and fill the pages of celebrity-worship media like Variety. And they’ll all fight to maintain that. But as other commenters here point out, few “stars” have the star power of yesteryear.

      You want to get into movies? Forget acting. Become a computer programmer.

  45. Rational Guy says:

    That’s your ignorance, pal. This is a trade paper and this guy is a three-time Oscar winner. Perhaps you’re on the wrong site? National Enquirer that way —>

  46. Same here exactly. Three Best Actor oscars? I have never heard of him. If I have heard his name somewhere, I definitely did not remember it.

  47. David Russell Foley says:

    Good thing he retired before he wound up as a washed-up, botched plastic surgery, alcoholic former actor/actress like the D-list former soap opera actress Jensen Buchanan who faces a serious prison sentence for felony DUI that nearly killed, and crippled, an innocent man going to his job interview at 6:04 AM. Her BAC was a stunning 0.34 when she plowed her Mercedes S550 into her victim just outside Santa Barbara on Hwy 154.

  48. Sully says:

    He’ll be back. They can’t stay away.

  49. Doug says:

    Probably fed up that Hollyweird has become a propaganda mill for leftist depravity.

    • Dylan says:

      lmao, DDL is a leftist (or at least leans left). The only depraved person I see is the outrageously incompetent sexual predator in higher office right now. To you rightwingers, “depravity” seems to be treating people like equal human beings.

  50. Your Mom says:

    Yes, but has he ever appeared in a Transformers picture?

More Film News from Variety

Loading