Happy Birthday Damian Lewis!

Another year, another birthday. Damian Watcyn Lewis turns forty-seven today!

We celebrate the occasion by offering a gift of quotes. Forty-seven of them to be precise. From all the people Damian has worked with, loved, and touched thru the years.

Happy Birthday Damian! May you have many MANY more! <3

1) “He was always the person most likely to make it. He was someone who would make the most of a break. He always had his eyes open. He was primed and ready. But he’s also very easy going, one of the guys.” Rashan Stone, March 2002 

2) “I really wanted an American actor to play the part, but Damian came in and blew us away.” Meg Liberman, September 2011

3) “Lewis has portrayed both marvelous people, like war hero Dick Winters in HBO’s Band of Brothers, and despicable, like double- (sometimes triple-) agent Nick Brody in Homeland. Together with Bobby Axelrod, they are three of the most compelling American characters of this new Golden Age….But what is surprising is that Damian Lewis is not American at all.” CBS News, February 2017

4) “What stuck in the memory from Band of Brothers was not sudden moments of great heroism, but Lewis’s immense stillness in the face of the clatter and incident of war.” The Guardian, March 2002

5) “He was obviously always going to go far. He was playing a very sombre, dark, humourless man, but he’s very funny between takes. He’s a fantastic mimic.” Christopher Menaul, September  2013

6) “Getting on set with Damian was like playing again. I’d come over to give him a note after a take, and he’d practically know what I was going to say. He knows when I’m not happy and I can tell by looking at him when he’s about to lose it. But it was a tantrum-free set. We shared quarters in a converted monastery in the Wye valley, and every night one of us would be cooking up pasta and sticking the rushes on.” Gareth Lewis 

7) “You have to make a movie every week and Damian and Sarah are on every page of the script. So, every eight days they’re making a little feature and it’s grueling the amount of work the two have to do. And I couldn’t be happier or luckier to have them both in my cast.” Rand Ravich, September 2008 

8) “Acting on the show has been a lot of fun, primarily because most of the acting I get to do is with Damian, who I have felt a great deal of camaraderie with and I like to think we have similar approaches to the work. We are serious about the work but we don’t take it seriously, which translates to being able to relax, have a good time, and get the work done. Any time you get a chance to work with live animals and have horses on sound stages and swim with coyotes, how can you not be having a good time?” Adam Arkin, April 2008

9) “There’s a lot going on beneath the surface, and yet outwardly he’s not doing anything…He’s got a great stillness that’s very compelling.” Sarah Shahi, February 2016

10) “He’s from the Royal Shakespeare Company so of course that vibe of working, in a way, in front of a live audience in continual non-covered takes was, I think, liberating for him. It really played into his strengths and he really appreciated the chance, I think, to be able to work through an emotion without needing to break it up with coverage or insert shots.” Lodge Kerrigan, January 2013

11) “It was just so deep and moving, and it really gave a sense of the layers Damian can play…From that point on, we never looked back.” Burt Salke, October 2012

12) “Do you know, I think you might wear a suit better than any man I’ve ever met.” Helen McCrory, January 2015

13) “You know… he’s lovely, otherwise I wouldn’t have chosen him. If I don’t think he’s lovely, we’re all screwed.” Helen McCrory, April 2017

14) “Damian is my best friend. Why? Because he’s the most available person to me! No, it’s because I love him to bits and because I respect his opinion and because he’s funny.” Helen McCrory, February 2018 

15) “Every time Claire and Damian are onscreen together, the whole show elevates.” Alex Gansa, October 2012

16) “..two people sitting in a room can be totally involving, especially when it’s Claire Danes and Damian Lewis.” Lesli Linka Glatter, September 2013

17) “I can throw hard and fast and he’ll always catch the ball and return it in surprising ways.” Claire Danes, September 2013 

18) “It’ll be a very different environment when we return and Damian, whom I love, isn’t there.” Claire Danes, May 2014

19) “I was really impressed by his devotion to his wife and kids….He made real sacrifices to keep that part of his life—the life part of his life—intact and happy. And he adores Helen and is transparently proud of her power and depth as a person and actor. You gotta love a man who loves a strong woman.” Claire Danes, February 2016 

20) “He’s just so smart and charismatic, you never could be sure what machinations were ticking behind the facade. But of all of the cat-and-mouse business, he was very clear about what the rules of the game were in the actual act of playing the scene. We could afford to delve into the darkness and dishonesty in the land of make believe, because we were so open and direct with each other as actors. To have that communication and consideration with a partner-which translates into trust—is a beautiful and rare thing.” Claire Danes, February 2016

 21) “There’s a tremendous amount of intensity on our set but he’s incredibly disciplined and a wonderful leader. He’s someone who makes people feel good about themselves, feel good about the day. He supports the whole team like a quarterback. I’d go down to the bottom of the sea in a submarine any day of the week with Damian.” Mandy Patinkin, September 2013  

22) “They both [Damian and Claire] have magnificent voices. I don’t think you will be seeing ‘Homeland, the Musical’ anytime soon, but you never know; we may end up doing something together one day.” Mandy Patinkin

 

23) “He would want to know about my love life, about whom I was going out with—at the stage of the relationship I’d got to, why wasn’t I doing this or that? It wasn’t just a schoolboy’s idle curiosity in order to find out information and then going to go share it with his mates. It was a real wanting to understand.” Charles Milne, January 2016 

 

copyright: Damian Lewis

24) “Damian arrived at Guildhall an articulate, well-mannered young man with a bit of a polite façade and left with the complete raw vulnerability that really grabs you as an audience.” Ken Rea, January 2016 

25) “As soon as I met Damian Lewis, I knew he was right. He’s an old-fashioned romantic at heart and I know he’ll always look after my girl.” Iain McCrory, April 2014 

26) “Damian’s full of beans. He’s classically trained, but what he’s also got this Celtic thing going on. It’s not just all neck up. He uses his body. But what was really unusual about him was his dynamism. And he’s bright. You don’t normally get all of that in one package.” Emma Fielding, March 2002 

27) “Damian is really funny. British, quick wit, charming sense of humor.” Malin Akerman, January 2018 

28) “THAT is Brody, I’ve never met him before — stop it!” Jennifer Lawrence, 2014

29) “It seemed to me that number one essential for casting Henry VIII was charisma. It was absolutely clear to me from the reading I did and from what Hilary said… this was an extraordinary, charismatic man. So, we approached a number of very charismatic actors, and unfortunately none of them were available.” Peter Kosminsky, January 2015  Damian’s response: “That will be on my tombstone. Best available.”

30) “Damian is able to take characters who do unlikable things and make you care, make you feel for them. People have been stunned by the range Bobby Axelrod and Sergeant Nicholas Brody. Bobby’s a character that’s about charisma and swagger, but one of Damian’s strengths as an actor is his unknowability. Whatever he’s putting out to the world, there’s something else going on behind his eyes. And that’s the one thing Brody and Axelrod have in common.” David Nevins, May 2016

31) “Damian’s character is brilliantly cerebral. Everything’s fast and light and facile, and I feel like I’m doing a ballet with him.” Maggie Siff, January 2016 

32) “I respect him so much. I am so lucky to be working with him. He’s a trained actor. He’s incredibly curious. Off camera he’s a charming Brit, with that dry humor. He keeps the American accent going all the time. It’s only when his wife calls that the British comes out – and it feels like he’s faking it.” Malin Akerman, May 2016

33) “Going to work each day is amazing and Damian is a charming Brit who’s just whip-smart and funny as hell.” Malin Akerman, February 2017

34) “He’s super-intelligent, super-engaged, really fun to play with.” Paul Giamatti, February 2016

35) “The fact that anything gets done — that looks even remotely usable or serious — is actually astonishing….We [fool] around a lot.” Paul Giamatti, February 2017

36) “Actually, I suggested to Damian the last time we were together that he and I should do The Odd Couple. The Odd Couple, I think, is not a bad idea. We could switch the parts off. I could be Felix and he could be Oscar.” Paul Giamatti, February 2017

37) “To go on that ride with those words, with that director, letting us tear it up, and to do it with such a great and generous actor as Damian, was a gift. Still feel pretty lucky.” Kelly AuCoin, December 2016

source: Showtime

38) “Someday we are going to work with that guy. He’s the best actor.” David Levien, January 2016 

39) “Damian loves to laugh.”  Brian Koppelman, June 2017

40) Koppelman: “As soon as we got on the plane last night, he became a British flight attendant.”

Levien: “He became a very elegant man…full service was beautiful to watch.”

Koppelman: “Quite a mixologist too.” January 2018 

Source: @briankoppelman

41) “He’s an emotional actor, but he’s thoughtful as well.” Ian Rickson, March 2017 

42) “He’s a wonderful actor and enormous fun. I have a big second act with Damian and it’s a bit like doing a dance every night: I don’t know quite what he’s going to do; he doesn’t know quite what I’m going to do. He’s so agile, Damian – he’s not set in his ways. I couldn’t do a show where I’m just repeating the same thing every night… I find that deadening. I set out on an adventure with the show. ” Sophie Okonedo, April 2017

43) “Because Damian has such an ability to listen and react truthfully in the moment, I’m able to be totally absorbed in that world and that is a great joy.”  Asia Kate Dillon, June 2017

44) “He is so generous and considerate and kind and compassionate and down to earth.” Asia Kate Dillon, June 2017

45) “Having a partner as generous as Damian makes the experience extraordinary because I can only be as good as my screen partner allows me to be.” Asia Kate Dillon, June 2017

46) “My wife would have been very proud…She wasn’t an actress and had no connection with the theatre other than she loved it, and we took Damian and our other kids to the theatre when they were young…Damian started acting at prep school, and we would go together to watch him in his school productions and we both thought he was very good. My wife was very supportive of him becoming an actor.” Watcyn Lewis, January 2013

47) “Lewis has a certain physical assuredness to him, a curious glow..” The Guardian, March 2002