New Look at ‘The Butler’ as the Weinstein Co. Picks It Up for Distribution


Forest Whitaker in The Butler
Forest Whitaker in The Butler
Photo: The Weinstein Co.

The Weinstein Co. announced today they have acquired U.S. rights for Lee Daniels‘ new film The Butler, which is currently in production in New Orleans.

Based on the screenplay by Danny Strong and Lee Daniels, is inspired by Wil Haygood’s Washington Post article about Eugene Allen (Forest Whitaker), an African-American man who served as a butler to eight Presidents in the White House for over thirty years. From this unique vantage point, The Butler traces the dramatic changes that swept American society, from the civil rights movement to Vietnam and beyond, and how those changes affected this man’s life and family.

Above is a new look at Whitaker on set, which I’ve added to the gallery for the film here on the site, which also includes a previously released beauty shot. We’ve also seen the pictures of Jane Fonda and Alan Rickman on set as Nancy and Ronald Reagan (see that picture here).

Who else is in this film and who do they play? Well, let’s see… Oprah Winfrey stars as Gloria Gaines, David Oyelowo as Louis Gaines, Aml Ameen as Eugene at a young age, Alan Rickman as Ronald Reagan, Jane Fonda as Nancy Reagan, James Marsden as John F. Kennedy, John Cusack as Richard Nixon, Minka Kelly as Jackie Kennedy, Cuba Gooding Jr. as Carter Wilson, Nelsan Ellis as Martin Luther King Jr., Liev Schreiber as Lyndon B. Johnson, Melissa Leo as Mamie Eisenhower and Robin Williams as Dwight Eisenhower. Alex Pettyfer, Colman Dingo, Vanessa Redgrave and Lenny Kravitz also star.

I expect the film will find itself at the Cannes Film Festival next year where Daniels’ most recent film, The Paperboy, played this year. The Paperboy will be released on October 5.

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Weekend: Feb. 27, 2020, Mar. 1, 2020

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