According to reports from Variety and Entertainment Weekly, Woody Harrelson is set to play President Lyndon B. Johnson on the big screen.
The 53-year-old True Detective and Hunger Games actor will join Tom Wilkinson, Bryan Cranston and Liev Schreiber in the “Actors who have played LBJ” club.
Harrelson will also star in three more films this year: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2, Triple 9 and Now You See Me: The Second Act.
— Variety (@Variety) June 16, 2015
President Johnson, the 36th president of the United States, was a man who helped pass the Civil Rights Act. Tom Wilkinson was the most recent actor to play the role of the former president.
During Wilkinson’s portrayal of Johnson’s character in LBJ, some accused the film of placing the former president in a slightly unfavorable light. But according to director Ava DuVemay, she just presented a fairer, unbiased and more complex version of LBJ, a person facing conflicts between his political obligations and his conscience.
LBJ 2015’s script was written by Joey Hartstone, and the film will be helmed by Reiner. Reiner was the director of the recent 2014 film And So It Goes.
“During the ’60s, I was a hippy, and Lyndon Johnson was my president,” said Reiner in an interview with Hollywood Reporter. “At the time LBJ was the target of most of my generation’s anti-Vietnam War anger. But as time has passed and my understanding of political realities has grown, I’ve come to see LBJ in a very different light. He was a complex man, a combination of brilliant political instinct, raw strength, ambition and deep insecurities.”
The new film will chronicle the Southern politician’s rise to become the 36th president of the United States from being just a Texan Congressman.
Filming of the movie is expected to begin this September in locations like New Orleans, Baton Rouge, Dallas and Washington.