Reclusive Oscar winner Sir Daniel Day-Lewis takes his job so seriously that he’s said to have refused to speak to his co-stars off the set while making the film There Will Be Blood.

Therefore he’s appalled that some of his deeply personal possessions which seem to lay bare his devotion to his craft are to go under the hammer.

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Bloomsbury Auctions is selling the hoard of treasures, which it says come from a private collector who obtained them ‘in a house clearance’.

They include an archive of photos of the actor and his family. Other items in the lot include a certificate for proficiency in stage fighting and a scrapbook featuring what is said to be his painstaking research into a role.

‘It is a unique chance to own something personal to Daniel Day-Lewis,’ says the auction house’s Lydia Wilkinson. The items illustrate the thoroughness with which he approaches his work.’

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The scrapbook appears to show how hard Sir Daniel researched his undisclosed role as a Cockney, carrying out interviews with wives of East End criminals.

Sir Daniel’s spokeswoman says the actor wants the mementos back. ‘They are his personal items,’ she says. ‘It’s so wrong in so many ways. I hope whoever owns them will give them to him.’ She declined to say if Day-Lewis would bid for them. She also cast doubt on the authenticity of the scrapbook. ‘He did not write it,’ she claims.

The actor’s immersion in his work is legendary. He spent eight weeks in a cerebral palsy clinic before playing disabled Christy Brown in My Left Foot. During filming he remained in a wheelchair and demanded to be spoon-fed.

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