Lee Daniels' The Butler finds distribution courtesy of The Weinstein Company

THE BUTLER will assuredly get a wide release now that The Weinstein Company has picked up the US rights to the Lee Daniels film. The movie has all the makings of a prestige film and Oscar contender. If there is anyone who can shepherd it to Academy Awards recognition, it would be the Weinsteins.

Plot: THE BUTLER, based on the screenplay by Danny Strong & Lee Daniels, is inspired by Wil Haygood’s Washington Post article about an African-American man who served as a butler (Whitaker) to eight Presidents in the White House for over thirty years. From this unique vantage point, THE BUTLER traces the dramatic changes that swept American society, from the civil rights movement to Vietnam and beyond, and how those changes affected this man’s life and family.

Daniels is still in production on the film in New Orleans so I would think that we likely won't see the movie until next September or October. THE BUTLER has an enormous cast that would make any producer excited for awards potential. Starring Forest Whitaker, THE BUTLER cast also includes Oprah Winfrey (THE COLOR PURPLE), Mariah Carey (PRECIOUS), John Cusack (THE PAPERBOY), Jane Fonda (ON GOLDEN POND), Cuba Gooding, Jr. (JERRY MAGUIRE), Terrence Howard (HUSTLE & FLOW), Minka Kelly (THE ROOMMATE), Lenny Kravitz (PRECIOUS), Melissa Leo (THE FIGHTER), James Marsden (X-MEN), David Oyelowo (THE PAPERBOY), Alex Pettyfer (MAGIC MIKE), Vanessa Redgrave (CORIOLANUS), Alan Rickman (CBGB), Liev Schreiber (X-MEN), and Robin Williams (GOOD WILL HUNTING).

Weinstein had this to say about acquiring THE BUTLER: “Lee tells stories in a way no one else does. What struck me most about this story is the perspective it comes from, which in this case is the butler- a man who was a fly on the wall for decades in the world’s most powerful home. It takes an unbelievable cast like the one that’s in place to do this story justice, and we are proud to be given the chance to share this story with the world.”

Does THE BUTLER intrigue you?



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