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Viola Davis to play Michelle Obama in new Showtime series


Academy Award-winning actress Viola Davis will portray Michelle Obama in a Showtime drama series that will delve into the lives of former first ladies.

According to Deadline, the hour-long drama, titled “First Ladies,” will be set in the East Wing of the White House and will “peel back the curtain on the personal and political lives of our most enigmatic heroes.” The series, set to be written by novelist Aaron Cooley, will also focus on Eleanor Roosevelt and Betty Ford in its first season. The premium cable network, which is owned by CBS Corp., has so far committed to three scripts.

Davis will executive produce the project alongside her husband, Julius Tennon of JuVee Productions, Cathy Schulman of Welle Entertainment, Jeff Gaspin of Gaspin Media, and Brad Kaplan.

In 2016, actress Tika Sumpter played Mrs. Obama in the movie “Southside With You,” a biographical romantic drama about the former first lady’s first date with Barack Obama. That story took almost place two decades before the Obamas’ two terms in the White House, from 2008 to 2016.

Last year, the Obamas signed a multi-year deal with Netflix. Their first documentary for the streaming platform, “American Factory,” debuted last week.