I’m with Liza. I’m totally going to see this.
OK. It’s not the cast I would have chosen. Who cares? This looks totally worth getting a babysitter for.
And now, just for fun….
Let’s cast the Obama biopic.
Will Smith is Barack Obama.
Granted, this is a pretty easy one. Smith already said he’d play the part, and Obama said he’d pick will to play him. You’d think Ali would have been the role of a lifetime, but this could end up being Smith’s most memorable role. He certainly has the charisma to pull it off, and can definitely carry a film. It’s a no-brainer, unless a director finds a talented unknown who absolutely nails it. But the thing is, this can’t be an impersonation. That’s something that would be spotted right away and detract from the film. Smith probably knows this from portraying Ali (just as Jamie Foxx knows from portraying Ray Charles, and Eddie Murphy knows from his work in Dreamgirls.)
Djimon Honsou is Barack Obama, Sr.
I admit Honsou came to mind because he’s an African-born actor who could also pull off the part. It would likely be a small part in term of screen time, since I believe Obama only saw his father once or twice after he left the family and returned to Kenya, but the role would cast a long shadow over the film.
Don Cheadle is Barack Obama, Sr.
This was the other choice I had in mind.
Scarlett Johansson is Stanley Ann Dunham.
This is a bit of a shot in the dark, but she’s the only one who came to mind. I’m seeing he glammed down a bit, and more like the looked in The Nanny Diaries. Besides, she’s an Obama supporter, so my bet is she’d love to play the part.
Kimberly Elise is Michelle Obama.
Elise was the first person to come to mind, for me at least. I’ve admired her work for a while now, and I think she’s bring the right combination of quiet strength, beauty, intelligence and passion to the part. Plus, I think she and Smith would make a great pairing on screen. But there are other choices.
Nia Long is Michelle Obama.
Long is great actress and, like Elise, would bring a lot to the role. Plus, she’s a favorite of mine from her her breakout role in Boyz in the Hood, and I feel like I haven’t seen enough of her lately. Also, I think She’d have great chemistry with Smith.
Regina King is Michelle Obama.
I know I picked her before, to portray Condoleeza Rice, but she’s a great actress and she would also make a great Michelle Obama, for all the same reasons that Long and Elise would.
Candice Bergen is Cindy McCain.
OK. I’m totally willing to be challenged on this one, but she was the first to come to mind, and I think she can more than carry it off. She might even be able to bring something to the role that will give it some added interest.
Richard Dreyfus is John McCain
I was tempted to cast Steve Martin, but I didn’t. Dreyfus, I admit, is cribbed from W, and is just coming off of portraying Dick Cheney in that one. Not only do I think it would be a delicious bit of casting for him to portray McCain, but if anybody could do justice to the part, Dreyfus could. (True confession: I almost cast Steve Martin in this role.)
Joan Allen is Hillary Clinton.
Hillary Clinton is not an easy role to cast, and I admit I was stumped for a while. But the more I thought about Joan Allen, the more I liked the idea. Look at her resume. She’s played a vice presidential candidate and a first lady. Plus, she’s got the acting chops for the part.
John Travolta is Bill Clinton.
I’ll just admit it. My main reason for making this choice is a desire to see Travolta reprise his “portrayal” of Bill Clinton in Primary Colors. (I guess that means I could have gone with Emma Thompson, too.) If not him then, Tom Hanks.
James Wood is Joe Biden.
OK. At this point, I began running out of steam on actors of a certain age. Still, I think Woods could pull it off without much trouble. If not, then maybe I go back to Tom Hanks.
Marcia Gay Harden is Sarah Palin.
OK. Go ahead and let me have it, because I’m sure that’s the choice that will get the most objections. I’ll be honest. I can’t possibly cast this part. Sure, I could give it to Tina Fey, but this isn’t a comedy, and at this point she’s way to closely associated with poking fun at Palin. people would probably laugh as soon as they saw Fey on Screen as Palin.
No. This potrayal of Palin needs to come across as sexy, ambitious, and scary. Harden is one actress whom I believe can pull off all three, and this might be another Oscar nomination for her. But if not Harden, I have one other choice.
Catherine Keener is Sarah Palin.
Again, Keener can pull off sexy, and if you’ve seen An American Crime (I couldn’t watch the whole thing), you know she can do scary.
The only question about these two actresses is this: Can they do the accent?
Oh, and the media personalities — Charlie Gibson, Oprah, Katie Couric, etc. — would all play themselves. (With the possible exception of Queen Latifah as Gwen Ifill.)
OK. That’s all I can manage.
I’ve made my picks. Now you make yours. Which of the above do you agree with? Which picks would you change? Who would you cast