Showtime is developing a fantastic new anthology series. The First Lady is set to delve into the unique position of the First Lady, focusing on how Michelle Obama, Betty Ford, and Eleanor Roosevelt have shaped it. Here’s all you need to know about the upcoming show on the 17th of April!
A revelatory perspective of American leadership via the perspective of the First Ladies. The First Lady will focus on three first ladies: Michelle Obama (Viola Davis), Betty Ford (Michelle Pfeiffer), and Eleanor Roosevelt (Gillian Anderson), and will follow their adventures in the nation’s capital, family life, and political effect.
What is The First Lady about?
“The First Lady” is the appearance of American leadership which is reframed through the perspective of the women at the heart of the White House, according to the synopsis description of the show. Many of history’s most consequential and world-changing choices have been taken behind closed doors in the government’s East Wing by America’s charismatic, complicated, and dynamic First Ladies. The series will lift the lid on the emotional and political lives of three fascinating women and their families, chronicling their paths to Washington, delving into their pasts, and following them beyond the White House to their most pivotal moments. Season one focuses on the fascinating lives of Michelle Obama, Betty Ford, and Eleanor Roosevelt via intertwined tales so personal it’s as if the White House walls are talking.
In the 2016 film Jackie, featuring Natalie Portman as Jacqueline Kennedy, the First Lady leads a group of reporters around the East Wing, a section of the White House that had previously been closed off to the public. Producer Cathy Schulman had an epiphany when she viewed this scene, in which Kennedy shows out where previous first ladies had kept their belongings. She tells Vanity Fair that she thought they all must have slept in the same rooms. Adds, “It’s extraordinary. To avoid seeming perverted, I thought to myself, “Oh, my God, imagine if these White House walls could communicate.”
That seed of an idea grew into The First Lady, a documentary that tries to explore the experiences of some of America’s most remarkable first women and how they are all related in some ways. The first season follows Michelle Obama, Betty Ford, and Eleanor Roosevelt as they navigate their places in the White House and history, directed by Susanne Bier and premiering on Showtime. The show depicts Roosevelt’s struggles with her husband’s health and her desire to play a more active role in politics; Ford’s struggles with alcoholism and life within the White House walls; and Obama’s concerns for her family’s safety while serving as First Lady, as well as her determination to help other families.
Understanding the top-notch actors hired in the casts
Viola Davis, who will play Michelle Obama, was the first to sign on to the project. Betty Ford was eventually cast as Michelle Pfeiffer, while Eleanor Roosevelt was cast as Gillian Anderson.
Davis, who talked with Obama before joining The First Lady, adds, “I feel extremely protective of Michelle.” “It’s our responsibility as actors not to pass judgment on the people we play, but I think she’s absolutely great.”
According to Vulture, Kiefer Sutherland (The Fugitive, Stand By Me) will play Franklin Delano Roosevelt. O.T. Fagbenle (The Handmaid’s Tale, Black Widow) will play Barack Obama. Gerald Ford will be played by Aaron Eckhart (The Dark Knight), while Dakota Fanning will play Susan Elizabeth Ford.
Lorena “Hick” Hickock, one of Eleanor Roosevelt’s closest confidantes, is played by Lily Rabe (American Horror Story). According to TVLine, Hickock was the most renowned woman journalist in the United States by 1932. According to Variety, Kristine Froseth (Looking for Alaska, The Society) would play a teenage Betty Ford while studying as a dancer under Martha Graham. Michelle Obama will be played by Jayme Lawson (The Batman) from 15 to 30. Dick Cheney, who served as Ford’s Chief of Staff, is played by Australian actor Rhys Wakefield (True Detective, The Purge).
Malia Obama was just added to the series. According to Variety, Lexi Underwood, who you may remember from the smash series Little Fires Everywhere, will portray the eldest Obama daughter.
Trailer of “The First Lady”
Every episode has been directed with precision.
Susanne Bier will direct the entire series, recognized for her work on The Night Manager and The Undoing. “Susanne is a visionary director who controls the screen with intense honesty and a distinct visual aesthetic,” according to Amy Israel, Showtime’s senior vice president of scripted programming. She’s excited about the Davis, Pfeiffer, and Bier combo.
Bier will collaborate with Aaron Cooley, the series creator, on his debut project as showrunner.
Full Cast of “The First Lady”
Viola Davis, Michelle Pfeiffer, Gillian Anderson, Dakota Fanning, Aaron Eckhart, O-T Fagbenle, Kiefer Sutherland, Cailee Spaeny, Ellen Burstyn, Eliza Scanlen, Rhys Wakefield, Lily Rabe, Donna Lynne Champlin, Saniyya Sidney, Lexi Underwood, Derek Cecil, Aya Cash, Rosalind Chao, Michael Aronov, Cayden Boyd, Kathleen Garrett, Patrice Johnson, Michael Potts, Thomas E. Sullivan, Julian De Niro, Bernadette Quigley, Marc Hills, Kevin Howell, Judy Greer, Ben Cook, Regina Taylor, Joe Chrest, Abby Glover, Anna Stadler, Ashley LeConte Campbell, Maurice P. Kerry, Arlo Mertz, Karen Ragan-George, Jordyn McIntosh, Shane Berengue, Story Walker, Sicily Ranieri, Gloria Reuben, Charlie Plummer, Clea DuVall, Jackie Earle Haley, Kristine Froseth, Jayme Lawson, Maria Dizzia, Jenna Kanell, Richael Markarian, Jeremy Bobb, Jake Picking, Lauren Halperin, Evan Parke, Gavin White, Jack Stanton, Michael Shenefelt, Daniel Gerroll, Alex D. Jennings, Kelsey Scott, Kylie Delre, Geraldine Singer, Paul Wilson, Tiffany Denise Hobbs, Bill Winkler, Jim Gleason, Tony Wade, Charles Green, Wes Jetton, Bradley King, Yvonne Valadez, Daniel Annone, Leslie Rodriguez Kritzer, J.P Edwards, Melissa Haas, Sean Hankinson, Kate MacCluggage, Matthew Sean Blumm, Nicole Lamb, Jeff Campanella, Narmar Hanna, Jason Jamal Ligon, Karen Beyer, Darius Ledbetter, Gabriella Ortiz, Thea Clark, Ed Sturdivant, Alexandria Benford, Beth Pilgreen, Kai N. Ture, Morgane Bensadoun, Payton Jackson, Madison Alsobrook, Ginger Renee, Danni Heverin, Cody Pressley, Brandon Lee Browning, Summer Menkee, Alexa Rachelle Jennings, Kent Booker, Tordy Clark, Jesse Gavin, Gianna Lutz, Alicia Ugarte, Hope Brown, Donovan DeWitt, Robert Bryan Davis, Austin Scott Hunter, Solina Galo, Doug Bertolini, Mark Pettit, Kelly O’Neal, Brenna Palughi, Taylor McManus, Mary Meyer, Jennifer Schottstaedt, Brezz Rosen, Savannah Rose Scaffe, Dee Kaye, Anya Kone, Paul Blankenship, Anna Fontaine, D.J. Stavropoulos, Madeleine Dee, Ryan Austin Bryant, Brian Andrus, Babatunde Oyewo, T-Walker O’Duggan, Roy Luke, Tej Alexander and Porsche Kemp
Director of “The First Lady”
Producers of “The First Lady”
Ellen Fairey, Pavlina Hatoupis, DeAnn Heline, Eileen Heisler, Sarah Finn, Cathay Schulman, Matthew Tinker, Jason Babiszewski, Susanne Bier, Aaron Cooley, Mark Cotone, Nina Khan, Andrew Wang, Viola Davis, Jeff Gaspin, Brad Kaplan and Julius Tennon
When will The First Lady be premiered?
The 10-episode series, developed by Aaron Cooley and executive produced by Cathy Schulman, who also acts as showrunner, is produced for Showtime by Lionsgate Television. Susanne Bier, the filmmaker of “The Undoing,” executive produces and directs the whole first season.
“The First Lady” will debut on Presidents’ Day weekend, the 17th of April, with a spectacular installation incorporating out-of-home advertising and digital projections near federal sites in high-trafficked tourist destinations.