I like that he got into specifics, talking about choices made and scenes he liked. Most actors would have used that stage as a chance to eulogize Heath in some flowery way, “He was a bright light, shining for all the world to see…”
A while ago, there was a post in these parts about DDL talking about what he learned from other actors. Someone said something to the effect that DDL was such a great actor that he didn’t have anything to learn from other actors of his day.
I’m glad that is not this Lewis’s attitude. Humility is not a quality often seen in the show business, but in that speech DDL gives an example humility and its value.
Am I the only one who kind of wanted to turn into Warren Oates and snarl, “Lighten up, Francis.”
Not for the sweet remarks about Ledger so much as for the weariness about the work of acting. I find it ironic when great actors (Brando, Penn, DDL) become revered icons of their craft and then can’t stop talking about how much they hate the process. It seems the luxury of those who no longer have to try.
Classy, eloquent and moving, Daniel Day Lewis spending most of his speech talking about Heath Ledger, just shows you talent need not necessarily equal hubris or arrogance – a lot of young and old actors could learn a thing or two from Lewis.
I think that if another actor had tried this, it wouldn’t have the same impact. You can tell through various functions that DDL was really impacted by Ledger’s work and truly misses a person he never knew beyond his films. I would think that at this point (not that there was really any question in my mind) the Oscar may as well already be engraved with DDL.
He’ll probably even mention Ledger again in a month, but it’ll seem just as fresh and beautiful as last night.
One thing that anyone who creates for a living, from a passion, learns as one masters their craft, is that weariness. Which doesn’t stem from neglect, or hate, or anything else other than a profound respect for the craft and what it takes to reach that pinnacle. Anyone that doesn’t understand that, doesn’t understand the soul of a truly creative person. Mr. Lewis understands that profoundly, and he communicated it brilliantly, honestly and with humility.
“One thing that anyone who creates for a living, from a passion, learns as one masters their craft, is that weariness. Which doesn’t stem from neglect, or hate, or anything else other than a profound respect for the craft and what it takes to reach that pinnacle. Anyone that doesn’t understand that, doesn’t understand the soul of a truly creative person.”
I think that sounds like a rationalization.
To feel that weariness is one thing. To complain about it, publicly and repeatedly, is something else.
If one is truly possessed by the spirit or the muse, then they have no choice but to soldier on. If one is truly possessed, then there’s more joy than misery.
Again I think this whole, “it’s such a strain i can hardly bear it…” is the luxury of someone who’s had enough success to be able to take it all for granted. Those who truly respect the craft are more busy working than bemoaning.
Which is not to say DDL isn’t a genius. I just think he’s lost the hunger to some degree.
Mick, I’m no actor but if I had to do interview after interview about my job, I’d probably start to talk about the weariness and drudgery of it all too.
Working on a film is an absolutely exhausting affair, for the crew and the actors alike. It sounds like a glamorous affair until you put in a 16 hour day, followed by another 16 hour day which adds up to 4 or more months of your life, time away from your family and friends; then add to that the preparation and intensity that DDL brings to his roles, which is a difficult job unto itself.
Yes, he makes a lot of money, he lives a good life and if you asked him about that I’m sure he would tell you how blessed he is; but the job of making movies is no picnic, never was never will be.
I don’t think Mick considers acting work, though, Monument and therein lies the disconnect.
I don’t have a problem with DDL talking about how difficult his craft is for him at all. It’s not the same as complaining about how your publicist is such a drag etc.
No, dre, I think acting is extremely hard work. As is being famous.
But when I hear DDL talking about how hard it is to be the star of a large budget film, I instantly think of all these actors out there killing themselves in tiny roles, tiny plays, commercials, road companies, etc, who have less motivation and encouragement and yet press on because they love what they do.
And, yes, I’d much rather DDL talk about his weariness with the process than surface-y stuff.
But my original point was that he’s one of these very select few — like Penn and Brando — who reached the pinnacle and have bad things to say about acting.
Phil Seymour Hoffman works his ass off, works circles around DDL, is arguably in line to become an icon, but he doesn’t gripe.
And I’m not saying DDL is an asshole, either. I revere him. I just think he should lighten up a little. That’s all.
“Phil Seymour Hoffman works his ass off, works circles around DDL, is arguably in line to become an icon, but he doesn’t gripe.”
Philip Seymour Hoffman? That guy could lighten up and he’d still be heavy, and I don’t mean pounds. Gravity feels extra strong around that guy. Sure, when he turns on the charm he’s fantastic, but seriously that guy is like a walking Quaalude.
What a great guy. My favorite part of that clip though is how much Viggo, Ryan and Tommy all looked like cowboys with the facial hair. It was like Howard Hawks setting up an ambush.
It’s obvious that “Mick” doesn’t have a creative bone in his body. I don’t know DDL and perhaps he is all the things you claim he is, but I do know creative people and the sacrifices they have to make to accomplish anything in this world. And I see that world weariness when I watch DDL the non-character. Maybe he just feels it more than most, but that doesn’t make him wrong. Just genius.
Well, I’m sorry you feel that way giantman.
I’m not really sure why you’re resulting to rudeness in this discussion, though, except for the fact that you seem to have missed my point entirely. I guess it’s because you’re very emotional and sensitive and deep.
Mick, everyone seems to be missing your point. So it’s either way over our heads, or wrong and the consensus is that you’re wrong.
I’m sorry you felt that I was rude, that wasn’t my intention, my intention was to totally and completely disagree with you. Which some often find to be rude, even though that wasn’t my intention. It is a difference of opinion and that’s all it is. I see it one way and you obviously the other. I can live with that and just wanted to make my point. I couldn’t care less wether you agree or not.
Fair enough, Mick. Though I disagree. I have no more of a problem with DDL who may (or may not) dread certain aspects of their creative process than PSH who may (or may not) love every bit of it. Different strokes for different folks
Exactly, dre, exactly. Thank you.
And I agree with most of what giantman last posted about this being just a difference of opinion … until he got emotional and rude again, which I really don’t get — we’re talking about an awards speech, here — but whatever. To each his own.
seriously, i wasn’t typing rude. not on purpose anyway.
Your work is very good and I appreciate you and hopping for some more informative posts.
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