Wednesday, April 24, 2024

The A List Shows Up for “Phantom Thread,” And Even Daniel Day Lewis Even Pops By


- New York, NY - 12/11/17 - New York Premiere of Focus Features "Phantom Thread" -Pictured: Daniel Day Lewis -Photo by: Marion Curtis / StarPix -Location: Harold Pratt House
-Photo by: Marion Curtis / StarPix

Focus Features, god bless ’em. They put on a black tie party for Paul Thomas Anderson’s “Phantom Thread” Monday night at a swanky upper East Side townhouse befitting the director’s fictional creation, British designer Reynolds Woodcock.

An A list crowd of swells came including Michael Shannon, Ben Foster, Dana Delany, Sienna Miller, Zosia Mamet, Paul Haggis, David Schwimmer,director JC Chandor,  even Little Steven van Zandt and his beautiful wife Maureen showed up. Gossip legend Cindy Adams got a special chair in the vestibule where she could depose all the famous people. Radio Man (still homeless, George Clooney) sat outside with his bicycle.

But where was the movie’s star, Daniel Day Lewis? He did take pictures outside in the enclosed heated tent where there was a red carpet and photographers. He took five, to be sure, one solo, one group, and three with members of the cast. And then? He left. Poof. Into the dark night.

Too bad. Upstairs at the Harold Pratt House things were convivial and cramped, a swell time in a well appointed richly paneled room. The women of “Phantom Thread” — Lesley Manville, Vicky Krieps, and Harriet Harris— more than made up for DDL’s absence. I asked each of them if they’d met Daniel Day Lewis while shooting– he stays in character, famously– and got varying answers. Manville, at least, knew DDL before hand. Harris, a surprise gem of the movie after a long theater and TV career, felt she’d actually met DDL and was delighted.

Oh well, I think the Focus people were a little disappointed DDL didn’t spend more time with us. But he’s retiring, I wanted to say! Never fear, the movie is top notch, our only real auteur-ific entry in the 2017 awards race, a piece of art. And what, I asked the astounding Manville, did she think had happened to the characters after the movie ended? She thought about it a second and answered, with aplomb: “They lived happily ever after, I suppose.”


Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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