The decision to cast Jane Fonda as Nancy Reagan in a film scheduled for a 2013 release made headlines yesterday.
“The Butler” tells the story of Eugene Allen, who served as the White House butler for eight different administrations. It is being co-written by director Lee Daniels and HBO scribe Danny Strong:
Lee Daniels will direct the film, with Forest Whitaker in final negotiations to play the title role of Allen.
Oprah Winfrey is reported to be in talks to play his wife, while David Oyelowo could play their son, Variety reports.
If Strong’s name doesn’t ring a bell, he’s the person who adapted HBO’s political hit piece “Game Change” from the book of the same name. Strong pulled out all the stops to depict former governor and vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin as “cold, snippy, power-hungry and cruel.” Given the work he did depicting Palin in that HBO film, one can imagine how Mrs. Reagan will fare in the new film.
“The Butler” will reportedly also star John Cusack as Richard Nixon and Liam Neeson as Lyndon Johnson. No word yet on who will play Ronald Reagan in the film.