Daniel Day-Lewis Spoofs Eastwood's 'Empty Chair'

by Bryan Lynn 2:30 PM PST, November 08, 2012
Playing Daniel Day-Lewis Spoofs Eastwood's 'Empty Chair'

One of the most entertaining moments of last night's BAFTA Britannia Awards was watching Lincoln star Daniel Day-Lewis relive Clint Eastwood's infamous conversation with an empty chair at the Republican National Convention. 

After declaring to the star-studded audience at the British Academy of Film and Television Arts' Britannia Awards in Beverly Hills that he was "a bit groggy" after being up until 2 a.m. the night before watching presidential election results, he joked that he'd brought along a special guest.

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"I have to say that I'm so extremely grateful and glad that -- taking time out of his very busy schedule -- the recently re-elected president of this country has made it here," Day-Lewis said, gesturing to an empty chair beside him onstage. "I know as an Englishman it's absolutely none of my business," he added to much laughter, "but I'm just so very grateful it was you!"

He did make clear that by presenting the spoof, he meant no malice toward one of his acting idols. "I love Clint Eastwood. This is no satirical comment on his politics or anything else. But I have to say, when I saw him talking to a chair in front of a room full of strangers, I thought, 'I've got to try that.'"

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The actor's empty chair routine came after he was presented the Stanley Kubrick Award for Excellence in Film by Lincoln director Steven Spielberg during the awards ceremony, which was hosted by The Good Wife star Alan Cumming. 

Among the other stars honored during the evening were Skyfall star Daniel Craig, who was presented with the British Artist of the Year award, as well as Inglourious Basterds director Quentin Tarantino, who received the John Schlesinger Britannia Award for Excellence in Directing. South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone were honored with the Charlie Chaplin Britannia Award for Excellence in Comedy.

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Watch the video to also hear red carpet reactions from the honorees and be sure to catch the full broadcast on BBC America on November 11 at 8 p.m. ET.