Alec Baldwin To Play Rob Ford-Type: 7 Other Actors Who Should Play Politicians


NBC is reportedly developing a show that would have Alec Baldwin playing a Rob Ford–esque politician. That sounds about right. Obviously, Chris Farley would be the ideal choice to play Ford, but as far as living actors go, Baldwin is as good a choice as any to assume the role of the bumbling, crack-loving Toronto mayor. In the show, Baldwin’s Ford counterpart would be mayor of New York City, so it’s quite possible we’ll get some Bill de Blasio humor in there as well.

Seeing a familiar face play a real-life politician is an all-too-rare delight. There are plenty of actors capable of it: Julian Moore’s turn as Sarah Palin was uncanny, as was Josh Brolin’s performance as George W. Bush a few years earlier. But it just doesn’t happen that often, most likely because political films in general are relatively uncommon.

And yet things are changing: With shows like House of Cards, Veep, and Homeland , Hollywood seems to have finally realized that TV shows about politics don't have to be boring. We're going to hope that this trend continues — and if it does, and somebody produces a show about real-life politicians, we've got some casting suggestions.

Emma Thompson as Hillary Clinton

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Granted, Thompson already played a character inspired by Clinton in 1998’s Primary Colors. But hey, she did a great job — and that was before Clinton’s political career even really got started. Thompson would have way more material to work with this time around.

Laverne Cox as Michele Obama

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Cox has the First Lady’s beauty, grace, and confidence in spades. Plus, it would be refreshing to see a trans actor play a cisgendered character for once rather than the other way around.

Fred Willard as Mitt Romney

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Willard already possesses two of Romney’s greatest political assets: The hair and voice of a game-show host. Also, as demonstrated in the clip below, Willard can say awkward, nonsensical things without any awareness that what he just said was awkward and nonsensical, which was another Romney calling card.

The Second City on YouTube

Drake as Barack Obama

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Drake has already publicly admitted that he wants to play Obama in a movie (“That’s the goal,” he said), and even wrote the president a letter telling him that. He possesses the same elusive likability as the president, and claims to have already studied Obama’s mannerisms in preparation for playing him someday. (Let’s just let him have it, yeah?) Also, Drake himself is Canadian and thus ineligible to ever actually be president, so there’d be a little bit of meta-humor going on as well.

Christopher Plummer as Joe Biden

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Plummer is generally known for his more serious roles, but if he ever wants to take a comedic turn, playing the vice president would be a great opportunity. He’d just have to trade in that classy British accent for a scrappy Midwestern drawl. Here he is, talking about getting drunk and loving food, which is probably something Biden would discuss at some point in the film.

Strombo on YouTube

Leonardo DiCaprio as Ted Cruz

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This isn’t as crazy as it sounds. DiCaprio already has the same squinty-half-smile as Cruz. He also loves roles that have him delivering big, longwinded speeches; and, as you’ll recall, longwinded speeches are Cruz’s specialty. As DiCaprio already showed us in Django Unchained, he knows how to play a crazy conservative Southerner.

Elijah Wood as Edward Snowden

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Okay, so Snowden's not a politician, but he sure as hell has influenced American politics, and at least deserves a Lifetime movie special. Wood is perfect for the role: He's boyish, earnest-looking, and just a little bit nerdy. And like Snowden himself, Wood tends to disappear for a while and then pop back into the public eye without warning. Throw a goatee and glasses on him, and you’ve got yourself a bona fide NSA leaker.