Bill Murray Plays FDR in the ‘Hyde Park on Hudson’ Trailer

Published 3 years ago by , Updated February 15th, 2014 at 10:00 pm,

You can always tell it’s Oscar season when films featuring big-name actors and actresses portraying famous historical figures start rolling into theaters (recent examples include The King’s Speech, My Week with Marilyn, etc.). Focus Features has gone ahead and released a trailer for one such production on the horizon, titled Hyde Park on Hudson.

The Hyde Park on Hudson cast is headed by Bill Murray as Franklin D. Roosevelt – who is joined by his Rushmore costar, Olivia Williams, as the First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, Samuel West (Howard’s End) as King George VI, and Olivia Colman (Tyrannosaur) as Queen Elizabeth. However, similar to My Week with Marilyn, the film unfolds from the perspective of a more obscure name: Daisy (Laura Linney), FDR’s distant cousin, who also becomes a good friend and confidante to the famous U.S. president – not to mention, partly serves as the audience’s eyes and ears as the film’s major players collide over the course of a colorful weekend gathering.

hyde park hudson bill murray Bill Murray Plays FDR in the Hyde Park on Hudson Trailer

Linney, Murray, and Williams in 'Hyde Park on Hudson'

Judging by this early footage, Murray looks to do a spot-on job channeling the mannerisms and personality of the late FDR; in short, his performance is pure Oscar bait. That also goes for the lovely period production design, old-fashioned musical soundtrack and storyline about the messiness of human emotions – all within the context of a get-together between British royalty and the U.S. First Couple (set against a WW II backdrop). Make no mistake, Hyde Park on Hudson appears to be for the period drama crowd what, say, Battleship is for those who love summer popcorn blockbuster fare. (And there’s nothing wrong with that.)

Many Murray fans should be pleased to see the actor continue his trend of working on more artsy and independent fare. Hyde Park on Hudson also looks to have a bit more mainstream appeal than some of Murray’s most recent work, such as his collaborations with Wes Anderson (including, this year’s Moonrise Kingdom) or Jim Jarmusch (Broken Flowers, The Limits of Control). After all, the film was directed by Roger Michell – whose credits include frothy flicks like Morning Glory and Notting Hill, along with more serious dramas, such as Enduring Love and Venus – with a screenplay by Tony Award-winner Richard Nelson.

Focus Features was also wise to settle on the early December date for Hyde Park on Hudson. That will allow it to start building momentum for the big award shows in early 2013, while also serving as counter-programming to the big blockbusters due to hit theaters that month (The Hobbit, One Shot, etc.).

Hyde Park on Hudson begins a limited theatrical release in the U.S. on December 7th, 2012.


Source: Yahoo! Movies

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  1. That looks eerily better than I thought it would.

  2. Its almost like mashing “My Week with Marilyn”, “The Kings Speech” and FDR. it does look good and i will be seeing this one shortly after its release. Good to see Murray having a colorful career

  3. Love him. Will see anything with Murray in.

  4. I love Murray in most anything, this really looks interesting to me.

  5. I like Murray, and I appreciate that he is attempting to grow as an actor, but in the trailer, I did not see FDR, but rather Murray himself. It’ll be a DVD watch for me, if at all.

  6. Murray is just such a familiar face that it’s hard to see FDR at all, though I agree he has the mannerisms down. I can appreciate him trying to actually impersonate a famous figure. That’s the mark of great acting to be able to do that. But we’ll see…

  7. As a lifelong fan of FDR (I own three biographies on him) I find Bill Murray’s portrayal to be spot on. Murray has always been one of my favorite actors, just as much as FDR is one of my favorite Presidents. I look forward to this movie with great anticipation. After all, this is a movie that shall live forever in fame.

    • Ah…do you have any insight on what lottery numbers I should pick tomorrow?

      • Said by the guy who just previously said (for a trailer) that Murray doesn’t capture FDR. Jeff, were you and FDR close buds?

        I also don’t know how you saw “Murray” in that trailer. He was not playing himself on screen.

        • Review…I said “I” did not see FDR, but rather Murray himself. The use of the word “I” indicates that it was my personal opinion. The latter commentator, however, purported, “After all, this is a movie that shall live forever in fame.” Enough said.

    • It was a pretty bold statement, I’ll say that.