Bryan Cranston’s Lyndon B. Johnson Play Will Be an HBO Movie
Three-time Emmy Award–winning actor Bryan Cranston’s destiny is to vacuum up Earth’s every last accolade. With that in mind, his Tony-winning turn as President Lyndon B. Johnson in Broadway’s Best Play–winning All the Way is being adapted at HBO. Once the TV movie airs — premiere date TBD, although early/mid-2015 seems like a smart bet — it and Cranston will take home several more awards.
All the Way (no word if the name will change) will be executive produced by Steven Spielberg and Darryl Frank and Justin Falvey of The Americans. Playwright Robert Schenkkan, the Pulitzer-winning screenwriter behind The Kentucky Cycle, will adapt his work for the screen. Schenkkan has collaborated with HBO before, earning two Emmy noms for his writing on The Pacific. Basically you’re only allowed to be part of All the Way if you’ve won a major award or been part of a critically beloved project. Here’s a look at Cranston in the stage version:
All the Way “offers a behind-the-scenes look at LBJ’s tumultuous first year in office as he takes the oath in the wake of President Kennedy’s assassination, navigates the escalation of the Vietnam War, and balances opposing interests to launch his landmark civil rights bill and win election to his first full presidential term,” The Hollywood Reporter writes. THR adds that in addition to the 99 (99!) Emmy nominations HBO just landed, the network lost the Outstanding TV Movie Emmy only twice from 1993 to 2010.
The most exciting aspect of this news, other than Broadway virgins getting to witness Cranston in full presidential splendor, is that Cranston is getting into bed with HBO. We all know HBO likes to keep a steady relationship going with its brightest stars and showrunners. So after what appeared to be a career-defining role on Breaking Bad, he might actually find himself taking scripts for a series that’s as good as or even better soon. Hard to imagine, but worth trying.