Presidential Films: A Look at Portrayals of The President of the United States in Movies

With Tuesday being election day and most of us already suffering from political burnout, I thought that it would be a refreshing change of pace to talk about movies that have fictional and historical representations of the President.  No matter what your political affiliation, there is a movie out there that people love when it comes to the President.

The American President

Released in 1995, this Rob Reiner film stars Michael Douglas as President Andrew Shepard and Annette Bening as Sydney Ellen Wade.  The movie takes a look at what it would be like for a widower President to start dating and still be leader of the free world.

Independence Day (ID4)

This 1996 science-fiction film showed the world at war, not with each other but an enemy from the stars bent on eradicating mankind.  Bill Pullman played President Thomas J. Whitmore.  At the beginning of Independence Day, Whitmore appears weak but is viewed as strong near the end of the film.  Whitmore even flies a fighter jet in the climatic fight of the movie.

Lincoln (2012)

Directed by Steven Spielberg, Daniel Day-Lewis portrays the 16th President during the Civil War trying to emancipate the slaves.  Lincoln comes to theatres in November 16, 2012.

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter

Based on the book by Seth Grahame-Smith, the film was released earlier this year.  Benjamin Walker plays Honest Abe as a vampire hunter.


“8”: A Play About the Fight for Marriage Equality

This monumental event took place over the weekend in Los Angeles.  “8” was written by Dustin Lance Black (screenwriter of Milk and J. Edgar) and the reading on Saturday was directed by Rob Reiner (The American President).  The cast for “8” is a veritable who’s who of Hollywood: George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Martin Sheen, Jane Lynch, Jamie Lee Curtis, and Kevin Bacon.  The play centers around the court case to overturn Proposition 8, the amendment to the California constitution that eliminated same-sex marriages in the state.