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Every 26th of January, it’s usually my birthday that takes centre stage. In 2013 it will be a slightly different story, as Daniel Day-Lewis will collect the coveted Montecito Award at next month’s Santa Barbara International Film Festival.

The prize is given to ‘a performer who has given a series of classic and standout performances’ – could there be a more fitting tribute?

Past recipients include Geoffrey Rush, Annette Bening, Kate Winslet, Julianne Moore and Javier Bardem. With the greatest respect to those illustrious names, the list does beg a question of the festival organisers: WHAT TOOK YOU SO LONG?

Ever since I became a Rooblaer, this is one actor I’ve been dying to write something about, which is my own small, personal tribute. Roger Durling, the festival’s Executive Director, paid one of his own: “He is indicative of what the Montecito Award represents and we are thrilled to be presenting this to him this year.”

Despite Day-Lewis’s retiring nature off-screen, and an increasingly infrequent work-rate, such praise has become commonplace. After all, should he pick up an academy award for Lincoln, he will become the very first person ever to win the Best Actor Oscar three times.

His show-stopping performances in My Left Foot and There Will Be Blood earned him the two previous gongs, in 1990 and 2008 respectively. The list of memorable roles doesn’t end there though. Who could forget the ruthless, psychotic Bill the Butcher in Gangs of New York, or his portrayal of the long-suffering Gerry Conlan from In The Name of the Father?

The festival will run for eleven days, from January 24th through to February 3rd, with the ceremony for Day-Lewis taking place at the Arlington Theatre.

Sources: Hitflix, BBC
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