UPDATED: Laura Linney making deal to play Eleanor Roosevelt in HYDE PARK ON HUDSON

by: Kate Erbland
May 6th, 2011

UPDATE: Oh, ha ha. Deadline now reports that Linney is in talks to play FDR's cousin Daisy in the film. They tout it as being "slightly misinformed." Okay. In any case, this is still interesting casting, the film still sounds solid, and the First Lady role is still wide open.

Yesterday, reports were out that Laura Linney was in talks to play Eleanor Roosevelt opposite Bill Murray in HYDE PARK ON HUDSON (I refer to this one from The Playlist), but now Deadline is "exclusively" reporting that Linney is "making a deal" for the role. Tomato, tomahto, let's call the whole thing off.

Murray will be playing President Franklin Delano Roosevelt in the Roger Michell-directed HYDE PARK ON HUDSON film (based on the radio play by Richard Nelson). Linney would be his First Lady. The film will take place during a royal visit from "King George VI to Hyde Park, the upstate New York home of the Roosevelt duo. The visit took place in 1939, as momentum toward WWII was building, and also as it was becoming clear that FDR was having an affair with his cousin Daisy." That affair, of course, is just a long-speculated one, but one that sounds like perfect cinematic material.

Linney has the chops to play just about anyone, even though her look doesn't scream Eleanor and there is a bit of an age disparity. Mrs. Roosevelt was fifty-five at the time of the events of HYDE PARK ON HUDSON and Linney is only forty-seven, but it's certainly a workable difference. I'm more interested in seeing her chemistry with Murray. But, more than that, I cannot wait to see who they cast as Daisy.

Linney previously played another First Lady, as Abigail Adams in the JOHN ADAMS mini-series.

The script is set as a sales title for Focus Features next week at Cannes. This one should go quick.

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