Day-Lewis bows out of acting with twisted romance Phantom Thread

US director Paul Thomas Anderson calls his new movie Phantom Thread a romance, but its star Daniel Day-Lewis said filming it made him so sad that he decided to quit acting.

The triple Oscar-winner plays fastidious 1950s London fashion designer Reynolds Woodcock, whose self-centred life is disrupted when his latest muse Alma (Vicky Krieps) falls in love with him and matters take an unexpected and sinister twist.

Opening here tomorrow, the film took two years to research and write in what Anderson, 47, said was a collaborative effort with Day-Lewis.

"It was always my intention to make a romantic film. The kind of things we talked about were the classic Gothic romances like Rebecca, Gaslight and Vertigo," Anderson said.

British-born Day-Lewis, 60, threw himself into the project, studying for months with designers and making a couture dress himself.

"Everything in the House of Woodcock was so particular - what chair, what silverware, what teacup. You had to involve Daniel in every aspect of that. There was not a piece of furniture or wall covering that had not been approved (by him)," Anderson said.

Yet, after filming was completed, Day-Lewis shocked the movie world last June by announcing without explanation that he was retiring as an actor.

"Before making the film, I did not know I was going to stop acting. I do know that Paul and I laughed a lot before we made the movie. And then we stopped laughing because we were both overwhelmed by a sense of sadness," Day-Lewis said, and that the sadness has stayed with him.

"That happened during the telling of the story, and I do not really know why." - REUTERS