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Essence 10th Annual Black Women In Hollywood Awards Gala - Arrivals

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Viola Davis is heading to the Oval Office — in a new drama series, First Ladies.

The Oscar and two-time Tony Award-winning Davis is set to play Michelle Obama. The Showtime anthology series will focus on the personal and political lives of First Ladies throughout history. In addition to focusing on Michelle Obama, season one also will focus on Betty Ford and Eleanor Roosevelt.

“Throughout our history, presidents’ spouses have wielded remarkable influence, not only on the nation’s leaders but on the country itself,” said Jana Winograde, Showtime’s entertainment president. “…Having Viola Davis play Michelle Obama is a dream come true, and we couldn’t be luckier to have her extraordinary talent to help launch this series.”

The How to Get Away with Murder star is wrapping up a six-year stint staring as Analiese Keating on the ABC show that is set to end in May. Davis will help produce the show alongside her husband Julia Tennon, under their JuVee Productions banner.

She tweeted about her new role on Wednesday, saying, “Sooo proud!!! Honoring and elevating these powerful, worthy Queens with respect. Go #TeamJuVee!!! @JuVeeProds #Legacy #Significance #FirstLadies”

And, how does our Forever First Lady Michelle Obama feel about Davis playing her? While we don’t have that information, we think it’s safe to say she’d be proud of the selection.

Cathy Schulman, Jeff Gaspin, and Brad Kaplan are also EPs on the project. Creator of the series, Aaron Cooley, will write and also executive produce the show.

A release date has not been announced for the series. Davis recently produced and starred in the Amazon Prime movie, Troop Zero, and is currently filming The Suicide Squad, which is expected to release in 2021.


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