The There Will Be Blood star was presented with the Stanley Kubrick Britannia Award for Excellence in Film at the annual British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) gala in Los Angeles, and he had the audience roaring with laughter as he parodied Eastwood’s bizarre appearance at America’s Republican National Convention in August (12), when he began taking aim at an invisible President Barack Obama he pretended was seated beside him onstage.
After receiving the prize from his Lincoln director Steven Spielberg, Day-Lewis bowed his head at the empty chair placed on the podium and said, “I have to say, I’m so extremely grateful and glad that taking time out of his busy schedule, the recently re-elected president of this country was able to make it here tonight.
“I know, as an Englishman, it’s absolutely none of my business, but I’m so very grateful it was you (who won the election).”
But the Oscar winner made it clear his spoof wasn’t a shot at legendary actor/director Eastwood, stating, “This is no satirical comment on him or his politics or anything else, but I have to say that when I saw him talking to a chair to a room full of strangers, I thought, ‘I’ve gotta try that. That’s a challenge.'”
Day-Lewis also joked about the phone-hacking scandal which led to the downfall of media mogul Rupert Murdoch’s News of the World tabloid, stating, “I’m looking around at this room of distinguished guests and I feel slightly like the odd man out because I think I’m maybe the only British subject not to have had my phone hacked.
“It’s probably some sort of testament to the uneventful life that I lead,” he added. “I don’t know where Rupert’s boys were when I staggered out of the S&M (sadomasochism) bar at five in the morning.”
Other winners at the Britannia Awards included James Bond star Daniel Craig (British Artist of the Year), South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone (Charlie Chaplin Award for Excellence in Comedy) and Quentin Tarantino, who picked up the John Schlesinger Award for Excellence in Directing.