Is Alan Rickman the new go-to character actor to portray real-life characters from recent history? Yesterday we learned that he will be playing Hilly Kristal, owner of the famous New York City rock club CBGBs for a film about the history of that famed venue. Today we’re learning that for another project, he will be heading down the East Coast a bit to Washington, DC where he’ll be playing former President Ronald Reagan in Lee Daniel’s The Butler.
Daniels’s film will tell of the decades-long career of a White House servant to the President. Forest Whitaker and Oprah Winfrey are set to star while Matthew McConaughey, Cuba Gooding Jr., and Terrence Howard are currently circling the project. The casting of former Vietnam War-protestor Jane Fonda as First Lady Nancy Reagan has spurred protest from some conservative commentators, many of whom never served, or even purposely evaded, active military service.
I know, Kristal and Reagan are pretty far apart from each other as far the types of people they are and the lives they lived. But if there is anyone who can somehow inhabit both roles in such a way that we lose track of the actor himself, I think it could very well be Rickman.