“Phantom Thread” is expected to be the last film in Daniel Day-Lewis’s illustrious career as he has announced his plan to retire from acting. Could the Englishman get a farewell hug at the BAFTA Awards? Should he win Best Actor he would walk away from the industry tying the all-time record for most wins.
Up until 1967 the BAFTA Film Awards actually handed out two acting trophies per category: one to a British performer and the other to a foreigner. The current record is five wins and is held by a trio of acclaimed Brits: Maggie Smith, Peter Finch and Judi Dench — Dench technically has six competitive wins if you count the now-defunct category of Most Promising Newcomer, which she won for “Four in the Morning” (1965).
Finch won both the BAFTA and Oscar together just once: Best Actor for “Network” (1976); unfortunately, both of those victories were posthumous as he passed away in January 1977. Dench was also only able to sweep both awards twice: Best Supporting Actress for “Shakespeare in Love” (1998). And while Smith has two Academy Awards she also was only able to sweep Best Actress once, for “The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie” (1969); she lost the BAFTA for her supporting role in “California Suite” (1978), but won the Oscar.
What is most impressive about Day-Lewis is that his previous four wins came from just six nominations. His first win was Best Actor for his breakthrough performance in “My Left Foot” (1989). Day-Lewis would only have to wait three years before racking up a couple more Best Actor nominations back-to-back for “The Last of the Mohicans” (1992) and “In the Name of the Father” (1993), which were the only BAFTA nominations he’s ever lost up to this point. Fast-forward nine years and Day-Lewis would be crowned Best Actor again for “Gangs of New York” (2002). Then his first collaboration with director Paul Thomas Anderson, “There Will Be Blood” (2007), led to Best Actor victory number-three. And his performance as US President Abraham Lincoln gave him Best Actor victory number-four for “Lincoln” (2012).
But Day-Lewis will need farewell sentiment to be on his side as he currently sits in third place in our predictions with odds of 40/1. Currently forecast to win is Gary Oldman for his portrayal of Prime Minister Winston Churchill in the “Darkest Hour” with overwhelming odds of 1/10. American Timothee Chalamet is next in line for his breakthrough performance in “Call Me By Your Name” with odds of 22/1. But if Day-Lewis pulls off an upset here, Oldman and Chalamet will both need to worry going forward: with the exception of “Gangs of New York,” Day-Lewis’s BAFTA winning roles have all won Oscars too.
Be sure to make your BAFTA predictions so that studio executives and top name stars can see how their films are faring in our odds. Don’t be afraid to jump in now since you can keep changing your predictions until just before winners are announced on February 18. And join in the fierce debate over the 2018 BAFTAs taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our film forums. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.