Belfast Telegraph

Friday 25 July 2014

Daniel Day-Lewis' Lincoln worries

Daniel Day-Lewis wanted to do his Lincoln role justice

Daniel Day-Lewis has confessed he worried about doing Abraham Lincoln justice in his new film.

The British actor portrays the former US President in director Steven Spielberg's upcoming biographical drama, Lincoln, and admitted he was "fearful" of "desecrating" his memory.

He said: "I was very shy about the idea of taking on this.

"Plus, I like working here. I've been tremendously privileged in being able to work in this country over the years.

"The idea of desecrating the memory of the most-beloved president this country has ever known was just kind of a fearful thing to me."

The star - who earned best actor Oscars for My Left Foot and There Will Be Blood - revealed he had to think about Lincoln not only as a towering historical figure, but also as a foreign statesman whose portrayal would be a sensitive matter for US audiences that revere the president.

"Because of the nature of the iconography surrounding his life and the extent to which he is mythologised and carved in stone, it's very difficult to imagine that one could ever approach him, to get close enough," he said.

Lincoln co-stars Sally Field as the president's forceful, high-strung wife Mary Todd Lincoln, Joseph Gordon-Levitt as their oldest son, David Strathairn as Secretary of State William Seward and Tommy Lee Jones as firebrand abolitionist congressman Thaddeus Stevens.

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