(The above photo was taken by college student Michael Phillips at a restaurant in Richmond, VA.)

Daniel Day Lewis is well-known for immersing himself in a role, on and off the set. So it’s no surprise the Oscar-winning thesp was recently spotted in Richmond, Virginia looking, um, prepared for his Abraham Lincoln stint in Spielberg’s biopic. Variety’s Jeff Sneider recently reported that Lewis has been in character since March, despite the film commencing principal photography in October.

“Lincoln,” based on the novel “Team of Rivals” by Doris Kearns Goodwin, will focus on the political collision of Lincoln and the powerful men of his cabinet on the road to abolition and the end of the Civil War.

“I was interested in how he ended the war through all the efforts of his generals,” Spielberg recently told Empire. “But more importantly how he passed the 13th Amendment into constitutional law.

Sally Field plays Honest Abe’s wife (Mary Todd Lincoln) in the pic while “Sherlock Holmes: Game of Shadows” villain Richard Harris recently signed on to portray Ulysses S. Grant.

“Lincoln” will continue to shoot thru 2012 although Disney has yet to set a release date.

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