Casting News: John Lithgow Joins Will Ferrell's Dog Fight; Jared Harris in Spielberg's Lincoln
11.30.11 by Ryan
Already set to appear in Judd Apatow's This is Forty, the upcoming spin-off of the director's 2008 hit Knocked Up, Variety reports that Lithgow has been cast in the comedy Dog Fight, which stars Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis as two rival politicians running for a congressional seat in a small North Carolina district election. What role Lithgow will play exactly is unknown.
John Lithgow is known for a variety of movie roles over his long career; though two of his most memorable have been on the small screen: his Emmy Award–winning role as the quirky alien Dick Solomon in the sitcom Third Rock From the Sun and, more recently, his Emmy and Golden Globe–winning turn as the creepy Trinity Killer in the fourth season of Dexter. His last movie role, that of James Franco's sympathetic father in the Planet of the Apes prequel, Rise of the Planet of the Apes was somewhere in the middle of those two extremes, but his latest projects imply that Lithgow is looking for more comedic roles than duplicitous serial killers.
Jason Sudeikis (Horrible Bosses), Dylan McDermott (American Horror Story) and Katherine LaNasa (Valentine's Day) will co-star in Dog Fight, which will be directed by Jay Roach (Austin Powers, Dinner For Schmucks) from a script by Chris Henchy (The Other Guys) and Shawn Harwell (Eastbound and Down). Ferrell, Galifianakis and Adam McKay (Anchorman) will produce.
With two movies opening next month (The Adventures of Tintin and War Horse), director Steven Spielberg is already working on his next movie, Lincoln, which follows the former 16th President of the United States and his struggles with his cabinet during the end of the Civil War. Another actor has been added to the impressive and growing ensemble.
Variety reports that Jared Harris (Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows) has been added to the cast as Ulysses S. Grant, who, at the time was a Union general and would later become the 18th President of the United States.
Harris joins a cast that includes Daniel Day-Lewis and Sally Field as Abraham and Mary Todd Lincoln, respectively, David Strathairn (Good Night and Good Luck) as Lincoln’s Secretary of State William Seward, Tommy Lee Jones as Pennsylvania congressman Thaddeus Stevens, Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Robert Todd, Lincoln's oldest son, and Jackie Earle Haley (Little Children, Watchmen)as Alexander Stephens, the vice president of the Confederate States. Hal Holbrook (Water for Elephants), James Spader (Stargate), John Hawkes (Winter's Bone), Tim Blake Nelson (The Incredible Hulk), Bruce McGill (Law Abiding Citizen), and Joseph Cross (Milk) co-star.
Based on Doris Kearns Goodwin's book, Team of Rivals, Spielberg has said that Lincoln will focus "on the last four months of Abraham Lincoln's life". Tony Kushner (Munich) wrote the screenplay. Production reportedly was set to begin this fall in Virginia, for a projected release in late 2012, though no exact date has been scheduled by Disney.