Anthony Mackie to Play Martin Luther King in HBO’s Bryan Cranston LBJ Movie
HBO had enough star power on its hands in adapting Bryan Cranston’s Tony-winning Lyndon B. Johnson show All The Way with Stephen Spielberg’s help, and now a Falcon has heeded the call. Civil War star Anthony Mackie will play the role of Martin Luther King Jr. himself, as All The Way gets ready to go before cameras this September.
Adapted from the Robert Schenkkan play, directed by Jay Roach and executive produced by Spielberg, All the Way sees Cranston reprising his role as President Lyndon Johnson for a story that begins with the Kennedy assassination and moves through the first year of Johnson’s administration, including taking office and passing Civil Rights legislation in Congress, through his landslide re-election.
According to Deadline, Mackie’s role as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is said to be “significant” to the script, portraying “a far more collaborative and complex relationship than was depicted in the Best Picture nominee Selma.” The movie drew some notable controversy for depicting King’s relationship with Johnson as more antagonistic, where those close to Johnson claim he and King supported the Civil Rights movement equally.
Plenty of roles remain uncast as the series moves toward a September shoot, but does Mackie make for a strong Martin Luther King? Will HBO’s All The Way earn as many TV accolades as its theatre predecessor?