This season we have two of the nation’s most beloved Presidents hitting the big screen. First, Daniel Day-Lewis as the brilliant and beloved, gone too soon President Lincoln in Steven Spielberg’s upcoming Lincoln, then Bill Murray as a President so beloved he served 16 years in the White House, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and finally, Robin Williams as Dwight D. Eisenhower in The Butler, which won’t be released until next year.

The Lee Daniels film, slated for release in 2013, also stars John Cusack as Nixon, James Marsden as Kennedy,

Liev Schreiber as Lyndon B. Johnson, Jane Fonda as Nancy Reagan, Melissa Leo as Mamie Eisenhower, and the star of the film, the sure to be nominee, Forest Whitaker as Eugene Allen, who served the White House as butler through eight US Presidents. Allen died at age 90 but while his wife of 65 years was still alive, they were both excited that they could vote for the first black President. The wife died before the election but Allen went on to vote and to see Obama inaugurated. From a Washington Post story, “Afterward, Mr. Allen, who had been living quietly in a simple house off Georgia Avenue NW in the District, experienced a fame that he had only witnessed beforehand. He received a VIP invitation to Obama’s swearing-in, where a Marine guard escorted him to his seat. Eyes watering, he watched the first black man take the oath of office of the presidency.”

I don’t what the Republicans want you to believe about Obama. I don’t care how many ugly Americans continue to rear their hideous backwoods philosophies for all to see, this was a significant moment in our history and remains as such. Those fanatics are lucky to be living through it.

From Collider



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  • Gregory

    To correct the repetition of one of Kris Tapley’s inaccuracies in his recently posted article portion: FDR was elected to four terms, but served as president for only twelve years, not seixteen. To be sure, that he failed to serve much of his final term was not entirely his fault.

  • Gregory

    Also, other people’s typos do not bother me, but my own do. I am aware that “sixteen” does not have a third “e” in it.

  • Kevin Klawitter

    Alan Rickman is going to be playing Ronald Reagan.

  • Jon

    And yet probably the most fascinating and interesting President whose life has yet to receive the big screen treatment properly – Theodore Roosevelt – has yet to have a film made on his life or at least a portion of his life.

    I know it was rumored Scorsese was interested in doing an adaptation of THE RISE OF THEODORE ROOSEVELT a few years ago, yet that production seemed to stall.

    As someone who worked at Theodore Roosevelt’s home (Sagamore Hill) for several years and was fortunate enough to do some research on his life in college, I have long believed that not only would a TR movie make for fascinating and thrilling entertainment, but also if done right would be prime Oscar bait. My biggest problem with the portrayal of Roosevelt on camera (save for Brian Keith’s performance in THE WIND AND THE LION) is that they have turned him into a caricature when in reality there was a deeply complex, fascinating man who was larger then life.

    Theodore Roosevelt has the personality, the popularity, and most importantly THE STORY to have a great, epic story told about him on screen. If LINCOLN is a huge hit, it would not at all surprise me to see Scorsese pick up on THE RISE OF THEODORE ROOSEVELT again. It is a story that should definitely be told.

  • Niles

    I am going to guess, but I maybe wrong that Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln trailer will come out this weekend when Lawless premieres. I noticed last year, that War Horse trailer came out early October and came out during Christmas time. So since this movie is coming out in November; I am going to guess its going to come out this weekend. I HOPE!

  • kjbacon

    As a big fan of TR – I’ve read all that I can get my hands on – would love to see an HBO mini on him. But, boy, casting would be tough. I like Tom Berenger’s go at at in ‘Rough Riders’ on TNT. A young Ed Harris would of nailed it, but who now?

  • Jon

    @kjbacon, you hit the nail right on the head as far as making a film about TR goes. Because the story is so massive, ideally an HBO mini series would be fantastic. However, something I always remember hearing Quentin Tarantino say that I agree with, is you can also make a feature film on only a “section” of a person’s life.

    Believe it or not, for me the part of Roosevelt’s life that I think is most appropriate to film, is to tell the story of YOUNG Theodore Roosevelt relocating to the Badlands after the death of Alice and becoming a cowboy in the Dakota’s. There is so much there that a filmmaker can explore, this young Harvard-educated New York aristocrat who starts a career in politics only to abandon it after dealing with the death of his first wife AND mother (same day, same house) at only 25/26. You could then cast a young actor in their late 20s/early 30s in the role which would be the role of a lifetime. And also the cinematography would be stunning. Think THERE WILL BLOOD or NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN.

    I probably should get writing on it already…

  • kjbacon
  • Jon

    @kjbacon, I know it well. 🙂

  • Ryan Adams


    thanks for that link — I never knew about that (because how could I? There’s no movie about it!)

    You led me find a page telling the same story from a different angle.

    Baby Alica grew up to be quite the firecracker. There need to be movies about ALL the Roosevelts.

  • unlikely hood

    as TR – tom hardy?

  • Ryan Adams
  • Jon

    Ryan, you are right about Alice growing up to be a firecracker/pain in the ass. She also lived forever and drove her father up the wall.

  • Ryan Adams

    have long believed that one of the keys to longevity is to voice every wild idea that enters your mind.

  • Bryce Forestieri

    Aaron Johnson umf!! Leave granny and get with me 🙂
    I’m even down to be your affair if anything…

    You just might make me see Anna Karenina <3

  • me

    Robin Williams as Dwight Eisenhower – talk about miscasting.

  • AJ

    So, we’ve got two popular actors playing former presidents in two inevitable Oscar-contender movies? Hmmm, might that reduce either one’s chances of winning the Best Actor Oscar?

  • Andre

    if looking better than Aaron Johnson (JohnsTon??) shirtless is a prerequisite to play Theodore Roosevelt, then sign me up! I have the photos to back it up !!! hahahahaha

    but yeah TR’s life by Scorsese would make a HELL of a film!

  • Loody

    YES! YES! YES on any possible Theodore Roosevelt movie. Helllooooo Oscar.

  • Kevin Klawitter

    More evidence on U.S. Presidents as the new trend: Michael Douglas has signed on to play Ronald Reagan in ‘Reykjavik’, a drama about Reagan’s peace summit with Mikhail Gorbachev in Iceland following the Chernobyl disaster:

    Now, what do you think will make the Right-wingers angrier? Jane Fonda as Nancy Reagan in “The Butler”, or Michael Douglas as Ronald Reagan in “Reykjavik”? Between this and James Brolin in the 2003 miniseries “The Reagans”, it seems damn near impossible to get a conservative to play him.

  • Josh

    FDR served 12 years in office, not 16. He was elected for a 4th term, but of course died during the beginning of it.

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