Lincoln 1860

Lincoln 1860

Friday, November 19, 2010

Spielberg Selects Daniel-Day Lewis for "Lincoln"

The major news out of Hollywood today is that director Steven Spielberg has selected two-time Oscar-winning actor Daniel Day-Lewis to star in his long-delayed film about Abraham Lincoln. The story has been announced on several sites, but I'm getting the information from this site courtesy of several Twitter followers of mine.

The actor Liam Neeson had long been the favorite to portray the nation's Civil War president, but he finally withdrew from the project earlier this summer, claiming he was too old at 58 to do the role. Day-Lewis is 53, which is closer to Lincoln's age of 56 at the time of his assassination in 1865.

The movie will apparently not be a biography after all as some have long assumed, but instead will be based on historian Doris Kearns Goodwin's Team Of Rivals, her best-selling account of Lincoln's clashes with his cabinet.

Today's news is apparently a huge surprise to Hollywood insiders, who figured Spielberg's "Lincoln" film was on the back burner with the withdrawal of Neeson. Additionally, Day-Lewis is considered to be one of the choosiest actors in Hollywood, frequently turning down scripts and going for years between acting roles.

I think Daniel Day-Lewis is a superb choice. His facial structure resembles that of Lincoln's, and his height (around 6'1") is close enough to Lincoln's. More importantly, is that Day-Lewis is a brilliant actor who does a great deal of research and preparation for his roles. He is a "method" actor who is known to stay in character even off camera while working on a film.

Spielberg is of course one of the greatest movie directors of all time. Let's hope, though, that he doesn't imbue this film with sentimentality or sappiness. One site I read has it that Disney's Touchstone label will be the distributor. Tony Kushner (Angels In America) will author the script.

With these three men teaming up for this film, there might be at long last an excellent film made about Abraham Lincoln. Filming is scheduled to get under way next year, with release in the final quarter of 2012. Let's hope it comes to fruition.


Jennifer R. Bernard said...

This could be a wonderful movie - long awaiting at that! Nice choice for lead - great choice for Director!

Have a wonderful weekend.


Susie said...

I didn't even know this was in the works. Great actor, great director and, hopefully, a great film.

Mini Choco-Pretzels said...

I heard there was a film in the works about George Washington. My vote is for Kevin McKidd. C'mon, that would be the greatest cast move ever. In fact, how dumb would you have to be to cast anyone else. It's perfect. I need to make the film myself, then.

Illinois1124 said...

This is late, but the best, most closest actor you could possibly get to the real thing is... you guest it! In Central Illinois!!! He portrays Lincoln in our local public broadcasting and local court room productions! I'm just so sorry he doesn't have some hot shot agent in L.A. The accent is there. he looks like Lincoln more than Daniel Day Lewis and is taller than 6'1". He is also the perfect age. I'm so sad a guy like this is looked over. So very very sad. Sigh.

History Blogs - Blog Catalog Blog Directory