Daniel Day-Lewis Spent a Year Interning With New York City Ballet for His Latest Movie

New York City Ballet is no stranger to big-name collaborations in their wardrobe department. Costumes designed by high-fashion's most celebrated like Valentino, Carolina Herrera and Stella McCartney have all made their way to the stage. But we've just learned that in 2016, it was actor Daniel Day-Lewis who set up shop in the NYCB sewing room.


Preparing for his role in the just-released film Phantom Thread, according to the The New York Post, Day-Lewis spent a year interning with Marc Happel, NYCB's director of costumes. "In the beginning, I think people were a little surprised to see him sitting at the sewing machine or walking in the door," Happel told The New York Post. "But he moved in quite easily and became quite friendly with the entire shop."

In the film, Day-Lewis plays a fictional 1950s London couturier. And to really master the character, he put in the work. Happel shared that they started off slowly by learning to pin fabric, before moving on to learn how to correctly cut cloth, drape, sew and measure fabric. Day-Lewis' costuming skills can not only be seen on the big screen in Phantom Thread, but they were also showcased on stage, as Day-Lewis helped hand embroider costumes for Firebird. Sounds like a pretty successful internship.

Latest Posts


Courtesy ABC

Dance Theatre of Harlem’s Alicia Mae Holloway Talks About Her Time on ABC's “The Bachelor”

Bunheads tuning in to the season premiere of ABC's "The Bachelor" on January 4 may have recognized a familiar face: Dance Theatre of Harlem's Alicia Mae Holloway, literally bourréeing out of a limousine to greet bachelor Matt James. While Holloway unfortunately didn't get a rose that night, she did thoroughly enjoy being the long-running reality franchise's first professional-ballerina contestant, as she told Pointe in a recent Zoom call.

Keep reading SHOW LESS

#TBT: Carla Fracci and Stephen Jefferies in "La Esmeralda" (1987)

Carla Fracci, a former principal dancer of La Scala Ballet in Milan, is among the rare class of ballerinas who continued to perform into her 50s and beyond. Romantic ballets were her calling card throughout her career. In 1987, when Fracci was 51, she was featured in a television special, dancing reconstructed 19th-century ballets in the style of historical ballerinas. In this clip of La Esmeralda from the program, Fracci and her partner Robert Jefferies, a former principal at The Royal Ballet, deliver an extraordinary performance, capturing the verve and spirit of their characters.

Keep reading SHOW LESS
Getty Images

Ask Amy: How Can I Make the Most of Performance Opportunities in a Pandemic?

My school is connected to a professional company that operates on a show-to-show basis. Students can audition for company performances when they're 15. My 15th birthday is in February, and I think that our directors are choosing people to participate in virtual performances based off of whether they have performed with the company before. This was supposed to be my big first year with the company, but COVID-19 has changed that. How do I make it known that I want to participate? Do you think I should wait until things are more normal? —Lila
Keep reading SHOW LESS

Editors' Picks