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artisanal film reviews | by maryann johanson

question of the day: What historical or modern personage would you most like to see a filmed biography about?

Eleanor Roosevelt

This second day of the fourth and final week of press screenings at the London Film Festival kicks off for me later this morning with A Liar’s Autobiography: The Untrue Story of Monty Python’s Graham Chapman. Given the title — as well as whom it’s about — I’m not going to hold out much hope that it will give us anything like the real story of Chapman’s life, and I’m sure that would be fascinating. That notion has me thinking on this:

What historical or modern personage would you most like to see a filmed biography about? And what actor would you cast?

(It’s sort of a followup flipside, too, to the recent QOTD “What is your favorite biopic?”)

My answer comes via another LFF film, Hyde Park on Hudson. (a review of that and other LFF films coming soon, with some posting later today). Eleanor Roosevelt makes only the barest appearance in the film, which is about a weekend in upstate New York during which FDR hosted the King and Queen of England, and that’s a real shame. Roosevelt was an amazing and dynamic woman who lived a full life and did important work — you could probably fill three exciting films with her story. And I might well cast Olivia Williams in the middle movie, about the White House years: she plays Roosevelt in Hyde Park, and the in the little we do get to see of her, she’s terrific.
Your turn…

(If you have a suggestion for a QOTD, feel free to email me. Responses to this QOTD sent by email will be ignored; please post your responses here.)



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