After playing Margaret Thatcher in the fourth season of The Crown, Gillian Anderson will step into the shoes of Eleanor Roosevelt on the Showtime series The First Lady. The actress thus joins the already confirmed Viola Davis and Michelle Pfeiffer, who will play Michelle Obama and Betty Ford respectively, as Variety collects.
Described as a reformulation of American leadership and told from the perspective of the first ladies of the title, this anthology series will address the personal and political lives of the wives of the presidents of the United States. Award-winning Susanne Bier, whose television credits include the miniseries The Infiltrator and The Undoing, will direct and produce this fiction, created by writer Aaron Cooley.
Eleanor Roosevelt served as the first lady of the United States between 1933 and 1945, that is, during the four presidential terms of her husband Franklin D. Roosevelt. Very politically active, she was the first presidential wife to hold regular press conferences, write a daily newspaper column, or host a weekly radio show. Although respected, his outspokenness and advocacy for the civil rights of black people were controversial at the time. Also, she worked for the United States to join the United Nations and was its first delegate. As for Anderson, the actress has been nominated for a Golden Globe for her portrayal of British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in the Netflix period drama The Crown. Known for playing agent Dana Scully in The X Files, her latest works include the series Sex Education, American Gods, The Hunt, and Hannibal.
Showtime and Lionsgate Television produce The First Lady, a series that, according to the official description, will focus on the east wing of the White House, where the offices of the first lady and her staff are located, facing the west wing, space of work of the president and his team. “Throughout our history, the wives of presidents have had a great influence, not only on the leaders of nations but on the country itself,” said Jana Winograd, Showtime’s president of entertainment, when a year ago made the project known.