Daniel Day Lewis as "Honest Abe"  

Steven Spielberg is finishing the year off on a high with two new releases, War Horse and The Adventures of Tintin, but he’s got even higher hopes for 2012 when he finally unveils the biopic Lincoln, which delves into the life and times of one of our most famous and beloved chief execs, Abraham Lincoln.

Double Oscar winner Daniel Day-Lewis finally green-lighted his participation after years of back and forth – for a long time Liam Neeson was tied to the role – and Spielberg couldn’t be more thrilled. They’re currently on location in Virginia shooting the project.

“I’m so excited to work with one of the greatest actors of our time,” Spielberg told the Chicago Sun-Times last week.

“He wouldn’t say yes for years. He even turned me down seven years ago when I asked him to play Lincoln. I think he was intimidated. You think about playing Lincoln, and it’s true that he was too great a man.”

Day-Lewis, the Irish citizen and resident of Co. Wicklow who won one of his two golden statuettes portraying the Irish writer and painter Christy Brown in My Left Foot, was sold on Spielberg’s movie when he saw the script that the award-winning writer Tony Kushner crafted.

“Daniel had never read his script. When he did read it, he understood the man,” Spielberg said.
Though Lincoln was born and raised in Illinois, Spielberg chose Virginia for the shoot because the film will focus on the last year of his presidency. Some photos have leaked from the set featuring Day-Lewis as the spitting image of old Abe.

Expect to see Lincoln after next year’s race for the White House ends . . . just in time for Oscar season.
"Lincoln needs his own wide berth," he said. "And he wouldn't be given a wide berth with both sides using him as a kind of political football,” Spielberg told ABC last week.