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‘The Butler’ Has One Ridiculous Cast: Minka Kelly to Play Jackie O to McConaughey’s JFK

Minka Kelly and Matthew McConaughey
Frazer Harrison/Kevin Winter, Getty Images

If you didn’t think director Lee Daniels was even just a little crazy after watching ‘Precious’ (yes, based on the novel ‘Push,’ by Sapphire), then wait ’til you hear what he’s up to with his latest film, ‘The Butler.’

‘The Butler,’ based on a Washington Post article by Wil Haygood, doesn’t have the same ring as that lengthy ‘Precious’ title, but the story is intriguing. It’s about Eugene Allen, a White House butler that served under eight presidents during his career. Playing the part of Allen in Daniels’ film is Forest Whitaker, while Oprah Winfrey (yes, that Oprah) will play his wife.

The Playlist reports that Cuba Gooding Jr. and Terrence Howard have also signed on for undisclosed roles, and all of this sounds relatively sane and normal, until you get to the presidential casting.

Matthew McConaughey is playing John F. Kennedy Jr., while Minka Kelly (‘Friday Night Lights‘ fame) has just signed on to play Jackie Kennedy. But wait, there’s more. John Cusack will take on the role of Richard Nixon, and Alan Rickman and Jane Fonda will play Ronald and Nancy Reagan, respectively.

This is some bizarro world casting right here. Is this an alternate universe, or is Daniels just that tone deaf? Maybe he comes from one of those families where you ask what they like to watch on TV and they respond, “Oh, we don’t own a TV,” and they do those little air quotes with their fingers when they say “TV” like they’re delicately disposing of a dead cockroach.

Hey, Lee Daniels, if you’re getting this weird about your casting, why don’t you just call Nicolas Cage? Maybe he could play Obama.

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