There will be politics

Day-Lewis comments on archbishop flap

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BERLIN -- Daniel Day-Lewis took on Britain's foremost religious leader, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Friday at the Berlinale news conference for his competition title "There Will be Blood."

The colorfully dressed actor managed to avert a banal question on the state of Greek society only to get stuck into the archbishop, Dr. Rowan Williams, who serves as the head of the Church of England, instead.

Day-Lewis told the crowded room of journalists: "I don't know if you are aware of this, but the Archbishop of Canterbury has been getting it from all sides today," he said. "It's not my position to comment on Greek society, but I do think the Archbishop of Canterbury made a big mistake."

Day-Lewis was referring to comments made by Williams, who called for aspects of Islamic Sharia law to be adopted in Britain, which has a significant Muslim population.

Downing Street, religious groups, MPs and watchdogs alike joined Day-Lewis in denouncing the archbishop's suggestions.

Day-Lewis, who plays the avaricious oil baron Daniel Plainview in Paul Thomas Anderson's film, was less willing to comment on press concerning his own person.

"If you would expunge from your minds anything written about me, because so much hogwash has been written," he said. "I'm inclined not to say anything as it is like throwing petrol on flames."

Day-Lewis wasn't ready to stop with the archbishop, however. He also took the opportunity to answer questions put to Anderson on the differences between "Blood" and his 2002 film, "Punch-Drunk Love."

"In the stories he's told, the films he's made, Paul found a way to tell that specific story from that particular time, and that's what he did with this film," Day-Lewis said. "It would have been weird to tell this story in the same style as he used before."

Anderson answered some questions of his own.

"Before we made the film we thought it should be called, 'There Might Be Blood,' " he quipped. "By the time we got to the end, we said it should be, 'There Will Be Blood.' The title offers a promise, and we wanted to make sure people got what they paid for."

Paul Dano joined the duo to talk up his role as the fanatical preacher, Eli Sunday.

"The role was very autobiographical," he said. "There are very few people I like in the world. ... Making a movie can be like prospecting for gold or oil. You don't know if you will get what you are looking for, or anything from it, and it can take you to a place that you don't come out of."