Los Angeles—Academy Award-winning actor Daniel Day-Lewis, known for his intense, thorough research into film roles he accepts, has reportedly dropped out of an upcoming film about an insurance claims adjuster after he spent just over half a day researching the role, his representatives have confirmed.
In a statement released by his publicist yesterday, Day-Lewis said, in part: “The script is good, the crew are good. Just spending an entire day with (the claims adjuster) either yelling at people on the phone or getting yelled at by people on the phone, it just was too much. I don’t know how these people do it. I’d rather play a customer service rep than one of these poor bastards.”
Lewis, who once spent months immersed as a cobbler in Italy preparing for a character, confirmed that his time with the unnamed adjuster was the shortest amount of time he’d ever spent researching a role. His statement concluded, “I’d rather spend 10 years working in the heat on some oil rig, like I did before doing ‘There Will Be Blood,’ for which I won my second Oscar, than deal with people on their auto accident. Never again. By God, never again.”
The movie, about an insurance adjuster thrust into a world of lies, deceit and murder, was scheduled to being production in January. It is unclear if Day-Lewis has received any of his reported $15 million salary yet, and if so, whether he will be compelled to return it. Day-Lewis’ representatives would not confirm what company the adjuster being studied by the actor worked for.
A source close to the production said producers are hoping to recast the role as quickly as possible, with James Spader’s name being mentioned as a target. “Depending on his schedule on ‘The Office,’” the source said. “Though, to be quite honest, no one really expects the show to get another year, what with it having jumped the shark years ago when Jim and Pam got pregnant the first time.”
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