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July 16, 2010

But who will Josh Malina play?


It's a very Aaron Sorkin day around here. Sorry. But it's sounding more and more likely that Sorkin has or soon will acquire the rights to The Politician, the tell-all by John Edwards aide Andrew Young. According to THR, Sorkin will be not only writing and producing but also directing. I'm thrilled that Sorkin will be writing the Edwards story, but I'm not so sure about the directing part. The balance of having the writing and directing done by different people can be useful, I think. And, of course, I'd love if Tommy Schlamme were involved. But we'll see.

My larger concern about this movie is how Sorkin will manage to make any of the main characters sympathetic. I haven't read The Politician yet, but in the interviews I've seen and read, Young does not exactly come across as a good guy. No one (except, you know, Edwards) ever liked Rielle Hunter. John Edwards is obviously no Josiah Bartlet. And by this point, even Elizabeth Edwards seems pretty yucky. It is, of course, possible to make a movie in which the audience isn't really intended to side with any of the characters, but I'm not sure that's Sorkin's forte. One of the most impressive things about The West Wing was the way he humanized politicians while making (some of) them seem good and admirable, if flawed. The John Edwards story is basically the opposite - "We thought this guy might be good, but nope! He's even worse than we imagined!" How will Sorkin deal with that? We'll find out!

Of course, there's a more fun question - who will he cast? Sorkin fans on Twitter have been lobbying for Sorkin alums - Bradley Whitford, Allison Janney, Matthew Perry, Janel Moloney, etc. - but I'm not sure any of them are really right for any of these characters. Wait! I could see Peter Krause as Edwards and Felicity Huffman as Hunter. I think they both could pull off those roles in a way that would make the characters seem interesting rather than cartoonish. Krause might be a little too young, though, especially if one were to suggest Stockard Channing for Elizabeth Edwards, as I was about to do. Nah, I'll stick with that. They're good actors. They could pull it off. (Rob Lowe might be my second choice for Edwards, though.) I don't know what Cheri Young is like in personality or mannerisms, but Sabrina Lloyd (Natalie from Sports Night) looks a fair amount like her. Andrew Young was the toughest to mentally cast here, but actually Josh Charles looks like the right type and could probably make it work. Wow. That was more Sports Night-centric than I'd planned. Oh, Elisabeth Moss could be Cate Edwards. And obviously Josh Malina must have a role, although I don't know which one. It wouldn't really feel like a Sorkin feature without him.

Posted by Kat at July 16, 2010 12:00 PM
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