Just a few days after adding Judy Greer (Halloween) to the ensemble roster, Showtime’s The First Lady has rounded out its central cast as Golden Globe and Emmy winner Gillian Anderson (The X-Files) has signed on to star as Eleanor Roosevelt, according to Deadline.
“Gillian Anderson is an actress of incredible range and exquisite talent – she is the perfect choice to complete this powerhouse trio, who will inhabit the roles of these iconic women,” Amy Israel, EVP, Scripted Programming, Showtime Networks, said in a statement. “It’s inspiring to have Gillian, Viola Davis, Michelle Pfeiffer, Susanne Bier and Cathy Schulman at the forefront of The First Lady. They have truly set the stage for a landmark Showtime series.”
Jayme Lawson (The Batman) is set as a series regular portraying Michelle Obama from ages 15-30, as the series begins with Obama as a young woman in Chicago and follows her as a Harvard undergraduate and Princeton Law School student, eventually marrying Barack Obama in 1992. Kristine Froseth (The Assistant), who will only appear in three episodes, is portraying a young Betty Ford as she trains as a dancer for Martha Graham in New York City, and into her 20s in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where she worked for Herpolsheimer’s Department Store and eventually married Gerald Ford.
The First Lady (formerly titled as First Ladies) is set in the East Wing of the White House, where many of history’s most impactful and world-changing decisions have been hidden from view, made by America’s charismatic, complex and dynamic first ladies. The series will peel back the curtain on the personal and political lives of America’s most iconic First Ladies. The first season will be focusing on Eleanor Roosevelt, Betty Ford and Michelle Obama.
Academy Award winner Viola Davis (How to Get Away With Murder) and Oscar nominee Michelle Pfeiffer (Dangerous Liaisons) have signed on for the leading roles of Michelle Obama and Betty Ford, respectively, with Greer also starring as Nancy Howe, Rhys Wakefield (True Detective) as Dick Cheney and Aaron Eckhart (The Dark Knight) as Gerald Ford.
The series is written by Cooley from an idea that originated with Cathy Schulman, who was inspired by Cooley’s spec script about Lady Bird Johnson. Golden Globe winner Susanne Bier (The Undoing) has also boarded the project to serve as its director and executive producer.
The First Lady will be co-produced by Showtime and Lionsgate TV along with Welle Entertainment (Otherhood), Gaspin Media (LA’s Finest), and JuVee Productions. It will be executive produced by Cooley, Welle Entertainment’s Schulman, Gaspin Media’s Jeff Gaspin, and LINK Entertainment’s Brad Kaplan. Davis will also serve as an executive producer along with Julius Tennon through through their JuVee Productions banner.
(Photo Credits: Getty Images)