Liam Neeson’s career has been at an all time high over the past two years and his future looks even more promising. The actor has just been confirmed to star in Oscar nominated director Lee Daniels civil rights drama Selma as President Lyndon B. Johnson. All this time everyone pegged him to play Abraham Lincoln and he went behind our backs and got cast as Johnson instead.
Over at MTV, Daniels himself stated that both Neeson and Cedric the Entertainer have come on board to star in the film that already features Hugh Jackman, Lenny Kravitz, and David Oyelowo in leading roles. The movie centers on the civil rights disputes that raged during the 1960s. It primarily focuses on the historic marches staged by Dr. Martin Luther King in 1965 in Selma, Alabama. Oyelowo will play King, Jackman will star as the racist sheriff Jim Clark, and Kravitz has been cast as activist Andrew Young.
Neeson will star as President Johnson, while Cedric the Entertainer will play Ralph Abernathy.
This week marks the 45th anniversary of one historic act of protest during that time — on March 25, 1965, Martin Luther King Jr. led a mass gathering of civil rights protesters to the doorstep of Alabama’s State Capitol Building in Montgomery. It was the end of a five-day, four-night march that started in Selma, Alabama, an act of public protest that ultimately became an important component in the passage of the National Voting Rights Act of 1965, which outlawed discriminatory practices that had been used to prevent African-Americans from exercising their right to vote.
Selma sounds like it will be a gritty, realistic portrayal of the events that happened during one of the most tumultuous times in this country’s history. The cast of actors that Daniels has accumulated continues to elevate the film and peak my interest. The director’s still awaiting a response from an actor who’s been offered the role of Alabama Governor George Wallace, who played an integral part in the state’s history during that time.
What do you think of Neeson playing President Johnson? What do you think of the cast Daniels has put together so far?