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Encyclopedia > Daniel Day Lewis

Daniel Michael Blake Day-Lewis (born April 29, 1957) is a British actor. Although born in London he holds an Irish passport as his father was the Anglo-Irish poet Cecil Day-Lewis, Poet Laureate of England. His mother is Jill Balcon, actress daughter of Sir Michael Balcon, head of Ealing Studios. Daniel Day-Lewis is one of the most gifted actors of his generation, known for his total devotion to the role he plays. He was trained on the stage, in Bristol, but he made his film debut in Sunday Bloody Sunday in 1971. He then went back to the stage in both Bristol and London, and did not return to movies until appearing in a bit part in Gandhi in 1982. In 1984 he had a supporting role in The Bounty, but came to public notice as half of a gay biracial couple in My Beautiful Laundrette. This role was followed by a completely different character in A Room with a View in 1986, where he played a snobbish, clumsy upper-class-dandy. The latter two films opened in New York City on the same day. In 1987 he assumed leading man status in Philip Kaufman's The Unbearable Lightness of Being co-starring Juliette Binoche.

His performance as Christy Brown in Jim Sheridan's My Left Foot (1989) won him numerous awards, including the Academy Award for best actor. He returned to the stage to work again with Richard Eyre, as Hamlet at the National Theater, but was forced to leave the production close to the end of its run suffering from exhaustion, and has not appeared on stage since.

Other film roles have included The Age of Innocence co-starring Michelle Pfeiffer, In the Name of the Father, The Crucible with Winona Ryder, Last of the Mohicans, and Gangs of New York with Leonardo DiCaprio. Daniel Day-Lewis is married to actress and director Rebecca Miller, daughter of Arthur Miller (author of The Crucible). They live in Ireland and have two sons. Day-Lewis has also a son from a former relationship with French actress Isabelle Adjani.

Academy awards and nominations


Daniel Day-Lewis attended the same theatre school, the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School, with fellow British thespian Miranda Richardson.



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