Daniel Day-Lewis Movies

Daniel Day-Lewis in Lincoln (2012).

Daniel Day-Lewis in Lincoln (2012).

Want to know the best Daniel Day-Lewis movies?  How about the worst Daniel Day-Lewis movies?  Curious about Daniel Day-Lewis’ box office grosses or curious which Daniel Day-Lewis movie picked up the most Oscar® nominations and Oscar® wins? Need to know which Daniel Day-Lewis movie got the best reviews from critics and audiences? Well you have come to the right place….because we have ranked all of his movies Best to Worst in 4 different categories.

Daniel Day-Lewis (1957-) seems to be the polar opposite of Adam Sandler.  Sandler’s movies are generally hated by critics but pull in the masses when they open in theaters.  Meanwhile Day-Lewis’ movies are loved…and I mean a deep love….by critics and by Oscar voters®….. but generally fail to put much of a dent at the box office.  If you could merge Sandler’s box office with Day-Lewis critical approval you would have the greatest movie star ever.  Coming to theaters near you Daniel Day-Sandler in Gangs of Waterboys.

Daniel Day-Lewis is the only actor to ever win 3 Best Actor Oscars®.  Even more amazing than his record breaking Oscar® glory is the fact that he has only acted in 16 theatrical movies since 1982.  His IMDb page shows 28 acting credits since 1971.  After taking away his television appearances and straight to DVD movies we are left with 16 movies to rank. In the table below, Ultimate Movie Rankings ranks those 16 movies in 6 different sortable columns.

Daniel Day-Lewis Movies Can Be Ranked 6 Ways In This Table

The really cool thing about this table is that it is “user-sortable”. Rank the movies anyway you want.

  • Sort Daniel Day-Lewis movies by his co-stars of the movie
  • Sort Daniel Day-Lewis movies by adjusted domestic box office grosses using current movie ticket cost
  • Sort Daniel Day-Lewis movies by yearly domestic box office rank
  • Sort Daniel Day-Lewis movies how they were received by critics and audiences.  60% rating or higher should indicate a good movie.
  • Sort by how many Oscar® nominations and how many Oscar® wins each Daniel Day-Lewis movie received.
  • Sort Daniel Day-Lewis movies by Ultimate Movie Rankings (UMR) Score.  UMR Score puts box office, reviews and awards into a mathematical equation and gives each movie a score.


Daniel Day-Lewis in 2007's There Will Be Blood.

Daniel Day-Lewis in 2007’s There Will Be Blood.

Stats and Possibly Interesting Things From The Above Daniel Day-Lewis Table

  1. 4 of Daniel Day-Lewis’s movies crossed the magical $100 million mark.  That is a percentage of 25.00% of his movies listed.
  2. An average Daniel Day-Lewis movie grosses $59.50 million in adjusted box office gross.
  3. Using RottenTomatoes.com’s 60% fresh meter.  14 of Daniel Day-Lewis’s movies are rated as good movies…or 87.50% of his movies.
  4. 13 of Daniel Day-Lewis’s movies received at least one Oscar® nomination in any category…..or 81.25% of his movies.
  5. 8 of Daniel Day-Lewis’s movies won at least one Oscar® in any category…..or 50.00% of his movies.
  6. Daniel Day-Lewis has appeared in 7 movies that were nominated for a Best Picture Oscar®….1982’s Gandhi, 1986’s A Room With A View, 1989’s My Left Foot,  1993’s In The Name Of The Father, 2002’s Gangs of New York, 2007’s There Will Be Blood,  and 2012’s Lincoln.
  7. An average Ultimate Movie Rankings (UMR) Score is 39.86.  10 of Daniel Day-Lewis’s movies scored higher that average….or 62.50% of his movies.
Daniel Day-Lewis in 1986's A Room With A View.

Daniel Day-Lewis in 1986’s A Room With A View.

Possibly interesting things about Daniel Day-Lewis

1. Daniel Day-Lewis was born in London, England on April 29, 1957.

2. Daniel Day-Lewis’s track to stardom.  Day-Lewis studied acting at the Bristol Old Vic School.  He got his first screen appearance in 1971’s Sunday Bloody Sunday.  Eleven years later he appeared in a brief scene in Gandhi.  From there he got a supporting role in 1984’s The Bounty. His role in The Bounty lead to critical received acting roles in two 1986 movies…My Beautiful Laundrette and A Room With A View.  Since then it has been one award winning performance after another.

3. Daniel Day-Lewis has married one time…to Rebecca Miller (1996-).  They got married in 1996 and have two children.  That made writer Arthur Miller his father-in-law.

4.  Daniel Day-Lewis has been nominated for 5 Best Actor Oscars®.  He won for 1989’s My Left Foot,  2007’s There Will Be Blood,  and 2012’s Lincoln.  His other two nominations were for 1993’s In The Name Of The Father and 2002’s Gangs of New York.

5.  Daniel Day-Lewis is tied with Walter Brennan, Jack Nicholson, Ingrid Bergman, Meryl Streep for 2nd place with 3 acting Oscars®.  Katharine Hepburn is the leader with 4 acting Oscars®.

6.  Daniel Day-Lewis is a legend when it comes to how he prepares for a role.

  • Killed all his own food for Last Of The Mohicans
  • Learned an entirely new language for The Unbearable Lightness Of Being
  • Broke his own ribs for My Left Foot
  • Lived as an 1870s gentleman for The Age of Innocence
  • Went to prison for In The Name Of The Father
  • Didn’t wash for The Crucible
  • Became a professional-standard boxer for The Boxer
  • Left his wife for The Ballad Of Jack And Rose
  • For more detailed information on these points check out this link.

7.  Some quotes: “He is widely acclaimed for his meticulous acting, which he worked on like a mad scientist who works on an invention” and “His total attention to externals, makeup, hair, clothing, manner of walking, gesturing and speech are mind boggling”.  Sound like these quotes would accurately describe Daniel Day-Lewis….but they are actually quotes about Oscar® winning actor Paul Muni.  Muni was a movie star in the 1930s and 1940s who was probably the first method actor.  Seems that Day-Lewis is following in the footsteps of Muni when it comes preparing for a movie role.

8.  Roles Daniel Day-Lewis turned down or was seriously considered for:  Batman Begins (Christian Bale part), The English Patient (Ralph Fiennes part),  Interview With A Vampire (Tom Cruise part), Philadelphia (Tom Hanks part), Sleepy Hollow (Johnny Depp part), Pulp Fiction (John Travolta part) and Lord of the Rings trilogy (Viggo Mortensen part).

9.  Is one of 8 actors to have won the Academy Award, BAFTA Award, Critics’ Choice Award, Golden Globe Award and SAG Award for the same performance.

10.  Currently Daniel Day-Lewis does not have a new movie listed on IMDb.

Academy Award® and Oscar® are the registered trademarks of the Academy of Motion Arts and Sciences.  Golden Globes® are the registered trademark and service mark of the Hollywood Foreign Press.

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31 thoughts on “Daniel Day-Lewis Movies

  1. HI BRUCE: 1 We may never agree about ML but we are of similar minds about MM. Indeed I tend to regard her as for the most part a ‘one trick pony’ with a liking for dizzy blondes with a dreamy voice roles. I suppose that’s the ‘Curse of Cogeson’ in that the site tends to turn a normally modest guy like me into a self-opinionated critic like John or Steve who thinks that he/she knows better than everybody else. After all not only does Monroe seemingly have a large fan following but AFI made her one of its Legends and as I’ve said before she is the only female movie Legend to have been included among Time magazine’s perceived 100 most important people of the 20th Century.

    2 She did though apparently crave greater recognition as a serious actress but in an episode of the TV sitcom Frasier the latter’s brother Niles made fun of her as one who “complained about not being taken seriously as an actress but then proceeded to capitalise on letting everyone see up her skirt!” [In that iconic scene from Seven Year Itch]
    3 Historians opine that to realise her l acting ambitions she would have needed to not play as many frothy comedy/musical roles with relatively lightweight leading men like Tom Ewell **and Don Murray but instead tackle stronger roles such as the Turner one in Bad and the Beautiful opposite the big dramatic actors of her own era such as Lancaster, Douglas, Chuck Heston or Mumbles [whom she actually dated]. Her best dramatic role is said to have been in The Misfits but in that one Gable was decades her senior and Clift in a supporting role had self-destructed in his private life. **The 77 year old Ewell got the A C Lyles walk-on part wild card in an 1986 episode of Murder She Wrote screened last week. IMDB credits it as his final role.

    4 However in a recently repeated TV interview Jack Lemmon who worked closely with her in Some Like It Hot said that her reputation as a temperamental prima donna was unwarranted. Lemmon claimed that she lacked confidence and suffered from the movie set’s equivalent of stage fright so that it took her a long time to overcome her nerves and that is why she was late on set so often.

    1. Hey Bob. Glad we agree on something…..finally……lol. Good break down on MM. I think it is a combo of lacking confidence and being a prima donna. Robert Mitchum has talked about her shyness too. Seems being shy and being in front of a camera make for a strange combo.

  2. HI BRUCE 1 Good Day-Lewis page crammed with fascinating facts. A study of the chronology of the mere 16 movies that Daniel made and which you have listed for us will illustrate long intervals away from the screen and people often wondered where he got to during those absences. I’ve told the following story before on this site but it may interest Day-Lewis fans who have not hitherto come across it

    2 A journalist who was holidaying in Southern Ireland one summer claims he called at a little cobbler’s shop in a tiny village and sitting away at the back of the shop quietly mending shoes was Day- Lewis. It seems that the shop was owned by a relative and Daniel found it therapeutic to work there at the craft in the way others enjoy gardening as a relaxation. Certainly the unenlightened could not have guessed that this was the man who had won more main Academy Awards than any other male actors in history. In IMDB’s current “Ultimate” list of the greatest actors of all time Daniel is ranked 5th just behind the quartet of Nicholson, Mumbles, DeNiro and Pacino.

    3 It is interesting that you mention Daniel’s connection with method acting because in a relatively new list on IMDB called the “definitive” Method Actors he is not mentioned. Unsurprisingly Mr Mumbles comes first but what did surprise me is that MM is listed 2nd and above DeNiro and Pacino. Now as a Legend in terms of fame and publicity Marilyn is probably 2nd to none but as a skilled actor I would not have put her above the likes Bobby De and Little Al, would you? Conversely in another IMDB list of EXTREME method actors Daniel is 1st and Mr Mumbles 7th. Para 6 of your Possibly Interesting facts helpfully lists some of Daniel’s “extremities.”

    4 Incidentally some historians claim that Mr Mumbles was NOT a method actor and that for publicity purposes he adopted the tag and wanted to stand out as the ‘leader’ of the method actors and be regarded as the greatest exponent of the Actors’ Studio Conversely Glenn Ford who has never been associated with the Method was said by a wife to have been heavily into it at one time driving her near mad about the house by for example wearing cowboy outfits and using strange drawls when preparing for a western.

    1. Hey Bob
      1. His absence from the screen is another reason he reminds me of Paul Muni.
      2. Thanks for sharing the DDL shoe cobbler story again….it is pretty amazing.
      3. I think Monroe is out of place on that list….she might be one of the most famous thespians to practice method acting….but no way did she reach the heights of the others.
      4. His “extremities” are going way overboard…but the man has 3 Oscars in 16 movies….so maybe he knows what he is doing…lol.
      5. Good stuff on Mr. Ford.
      Thanks for checking out our DDL birthday page.

  3. What are you talking about I loved him in his scenes with the unicorn in Legend and who can forget him in Bladerunner and Gladiator. I am of course joking. Everybody makes mistakes.

    1. Hey Kevin….oooopppppssss. I was in such a rush leaving the house this morning that I forget to change the “table” number on the page. I will fix it as soon as I get home.

      In the meantime this table certainly changes the career of DDL…..lol. Thanks for the catch.

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