Since his debut with Hard Eight in 1996, Paul Thomas Anderson has made a name for himself as one of the true masters of contemporary American filmmaking. Though each of his works holds a special place in cinema, it is hard to argue his 2007 hit There Will Be Blood is anything but his masterwork.
Much of the film’s staying power lands on the shoulders of its star Daniel Day-Lewis. The actor’s performance would go on to win him an Academy Award for Best Actor. The two make a formidable team, so much so that the prospect of their working together again is enough to generate significant buzz, even if little else is known about the project. So far, even the title has yet to be officially announced. However, thanks to some set photos, we may know a bit more about the upcoming Paul Thomas Anderson film.
Several on-set photos have been released from Whitby Photography (via Cigarettes and Red Vines). The pictures give us some idea of the general look of the film, which is said to be a period piece regarding the world of 1950s fashion. The pictures offer a small glimpse of Day-Lewis as he walks through a graveyard. Additionally, according to the blog featuring the new photographs, there are now indications that the film may be titled Phantom Thread.
The author sites wording on various signs and vans seen around the set, though none of the released photos show this with any certainty. Even if the signs and vans are correct, this could be an unrelated coincidence, or even just a working title. If it is the title, it’s an intriguing one. Given the film’s set within the world of fashion, it certainly fits. Still, without official confirmation it’s hard to say for sure just yet.
It’s also hard to know just what to make of the photos, though a few do reveal some of the period-correct gas stations and cars. There is certainly a heavy 50s vibe in what is shown, including in the costume choices for Day-Lewis. Costuming is always a major factor in the works of Anderson, so seeing Day-Lewis in a swank overcoat isn’t really a surprise.
Still, it’s good to see him in action. Day-Lewis is notoriously picky about the roles he takes, and this will be his first role since playing Abraham Lincoln in 2012. He’s not the kind of actor who agrees to sign on to a movie just for a paycheck, so his inclusion is generally seen as a sign of potential quality for the project.
And, of course, it’s exciting to see these two working together again. It seems unlikely that Day-Lewis could top the raw intensity of Daniel Plainview, his character from There Will Be Blood, but the one-two punch of actor and director are enough to spark talk of awards potential before the film is even shot. It’s hard to say with any degree of certainty, but it stands to reason that there’s cause for excitement.
Screen Rant will have more details regarding the new Paul Thomas Anderson film as they are made available.