Oscar-winning actor Daniel Day-Lewis has revealed he is retiring from acting.

The Wicklow-based actor, who is the only performer to ever win three best actor Academy Awards, has not given a reason for the decision. The news was announced in a statement from Day-Lewis' spokesperson Leslee Dart to Variety.

"Daniel Day-Lewis will no longer be working as an actor," the statement read. "He is immensely grateful to all of his collaborators and audiences over the many years. 

"This is a private decision and neither he nor his representatives will make any further comment on this subject."

Three-time Oscar winner Daniel Day-Lewis announces retirement from acting

The intensely private Day-Lewis, one of the most celebrated actors of his generation, has been nominated for Best Actor Oscar five times and has taken home the trophy on three occasions, for 1989's My Left Foot, 2007's There Will Be Blood and for the title role in 2012's Lincoln. He was also nominated for Gangs of New York and In the Name of the Father.

He is famous for his 'method' approach to acting and would go to extreme lengths to prepare for each role.

This included remaining in character as Christy Brown, using a wheelchair and been spoon fed by crew members throughout the production of Jim Sheridan's My Left Foot.

He also lived in the wilderness while preparing for Last of the Mohicans and even trained as a butcher for Gangs of New York where he also caught pneumonia after he refused to change out of his threadbare coat while on set.  

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The 60-year-old actor, who has dual Irish and British citizenship, is known to be fiercely private and lives in Wicklow with his wife Rebecca Miller and their sons.

He grew up in south London and is the son of poet Cecil Day-Lewis and actress Jill Balcon. 

Daniel Day Lewis as Abraham Lincoln in 2012's Lincoln

The Academy Award winner has one film awaiting release, the upcoming drama Phantom Thread. The film is set in 1950s London and stars Day-Lewis as a fashion designer who caters to high society.

The drama will see Day-Lewis reunite with his There Will Be Blood director Paul Thomas Anderson. The film is scheduled to be released in cinemas on December 25, 2017.

Daniel Day-Lewis in 2007's There Will Be Blood

Day-Lewis has previously taken extended breaks from the film industry. Perhaps most famously, in the late 1990s the actor did a stint as a cobbler in the Italian city of Florence. 

Fans have taken to Twitter to express their disappointment at the news.

Some commentators are hoping that the method actor is merely preparing for his next role...as a man who quits his acting career.