The Wicklow-based actor got the nod for his Academy-award winning performance in Lincoln. He won his first Oscar for his portrayal of Christy Brown in My Left Foot.
With this year’s Oscar categories full of movies based on real-life figures, Rolling Stone’s star-studded list features the best true-life depictions of all time, with Robert De Niro at the top for his iconic Raging Bull performance. Helen Mirren gets a nod for The Queen while Julia Roberts is included for Erin Brockovich.
Daniel Day-Lewis won two Oscars for portraying real people but his portrayal of one of America’s best loved presidents was described as “astonishing” by Rolling Stone.
“Daniel Day-Lewis had won his first of three Oscars for playing disabled Irish poet Christy Brown in My Left Foot, but even the physical and vocal contortions of that part weren’t nearly as astonishing as what the actor does in Steven Spielberg’s portrait of a POTUS [President of the United States],” it says.
The magazine credits his Oscar-winning performance — at No 8 on the list — for giving a picture of Lincoln which “inspires both awe and genuine love”.
“The actor plays Lincoln as a down-to-earth, deeply humane individual — one who cracks jokes, needles his opponents, and wraps himself in a little blanket whenever he feels a chill.”
De Niro topped the list for his portrayal of former middleweight champion Jake LaMotta in Raging Bull.
“Forget the sheer physical effort that De Niro put into playing former middleweight champion Jake LaMotta at both his trim fighting weight and in his bloated later years, what’s more impressive is how the actor commits to the boxer’s interior. He creates an impression of a man so beset by his own demons that he can’t enjoy his own success,” Rolling Stone states.
This year’s Academy Awards are full of nominations for actors who have portrayed real people on the big screen, with Eddie Redmayne tipped to take home an Oscar for playing physicist Stephen Hawking in The Theory of Everything.
1929 – the year the first ceremony was held at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel.
3 – the number of times the ceremony has not gone ahead as planned. In 1938 flooding in Los Angeles delayed it by a week. The event was postponed in 1968 following the murder of Dr Martin Luther King Jr and again in 1981 after the failed assassination attempt on President Ronald Reagan.
1939 – the first time the Academy called the award by its nickname – the Oscar. Up until then they had been known by their formal title – the Academy Award of Merit.
3 – the number of years during the Second World War that painted plaster statuettes were given out because of a shortage of metal caused by the conflict. They were all exchanged for gold-plated metal awards when the war ended.
2000 – the year that the ceremony’s shipment of statuettes were stolen. They were recovered in time but the Academy has kept a spare ceremony’s worth of statuettes on hand ever since.
3.4 million – the number of times host Ellen DeGeneres’s selfie – with a line-up of stars including Meryl Streep, Jennifer Lawrence, Kevin Spacey, Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt – was retweeted. It broke a record set by US president Barack Obama with a picture of him hugging First Lady Michelle Obama after his re-election in 2012. Twitter even had to send out an apology because all the retweeting disrupted the service for more than 20 minutes.
2 – the number of people who know the results before the envelopes are opened
225 – countries where the Oscar telecast will be seen
19 – the number of times Bob Hope hosted the awards – a record