HBO Films: All the Way debuts in May


Anthony Mackie, Melissa Leo, Bradley Whitford And Frank Langella Co-Star;
Ensemble Cast Includes Joe Morton, Stephen Root, Marque Richardson,
Aisha Hinds, Todd Weeks, Mo McRae And Spencer Garrett

“Until justice is blind to color, until education is unaware of race,
until opportunity is unconcerned with the color of men's skins,
emancipation will be a proclamation, but not a fact.”
-- Lyndon B. Johnson
            Following its critically acclaimed, award-winning Broadway run, ALL THE WAY, a riveting behind-the-scenes look at President Lyndon B. Johnson’s tumultuous first year in office in the wake of President Kennedy’s assassination, comes to HBO this May. Bryan Cranston (four-time Emmy® winner for “Breaking Bad”) reprises his Tony Award-winning role for the HBO Films presentation, which is directed by Jay Roach (“Trumbo”; Emmy® winner for HBO’s “Game Change” and “Recount”) from a screenplay by Robert Schenkkan (Pulitzer Prize winner for “The Kentucky Cycle”; two-time Emmy®nominee and Writers Guild Award winner for HBO’s “The Pacific”), who has adapted his Tony Award-winning play of the same name.
            Co-starring with Cranston are Anthony Mackie (Martin Luther King), Melissa Leo (Lady Bird Johnson), Bradley Whitford (Hubert Humphrey) and Frank Langella (Sen. Richard Russell).
            Additional cast members include Joe Morton (Roy Wilkins), Stephen Root (J. Edgar Hoover), Marque Richardson (Bob Moses), Aisha Hinds (Fanny Lou Hamer), Todd Weeks (Walter Jenkins), Mo McRae (Stokely Carmichael) and Spencer Garrett (Walter Reuther).
            The HBO Films presentation follows Johnson during his early administration, as he sacrifices his past, his ties with the South and all that brought him to power in order to pass the landmark Civil Rights Act, and focuses on his efforts to secure his legacy, control his demons of insecurity and win the presidency on his own terms.
            ALL THE WAY is produced for HBO by Amblin Television, Tale Told Productions, Moonshot Entertainment and Everyman Pictures, with Steven Spielberg, Robert Schenkkan, Bryan Cranston, Jay Roach, Darryl Frank and Justin Falvey (“The Americans”) executive producing, and James Degus (“Sneaky Pete”) co-executive producing.
            The 2014 Broadway production of “All the Way,” starring Cranston, swept the awards season, winning Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle, Drama League and Tony awards, as well as the Steinberg/American Theater Critics Award, the inaugural Edward M. Kennedy Award and Boston’s Elliot Norton Award. The play also set Broadway box-office records twice for biggest weekly gross of a new play (non-musical).

            Raised in Texas, writer Robert Schenkkan’s interest in LBJ goes much deeper than a playwright’s search for theatrical fodder. His father knew Johnson when he was a senator and sought his support in creating the first public television and radio station in the Southwest. There are stories of visiting LBJ’s ranch, where, on one occasion, the family station wagon was pushed out of a muddy ditch by the man himself. As a young boy, Schenkkan volunteered at Johnson campaign headquarters with his mother and watched his family celebrate Johnson’s 1964 win over Barry Goldwater.
            That year marked a critical moment in U.S. history. Segregation was being rocked by a strong counter-movement of social justice. Change was no longer just a possibility, but a necessity. A large cast of players, who would do battle and set the stage for this social shift, surrounded Johnson, including Dr. Martin Luther King, Bob Moses, Stokely Carmichael, Sen. Hubert Humphrey, Gov. George Wallace, Sen. Richard Russell, J. Edgar Hoover, Sen. Everett Dirksen and Ralph Abernathy, among others. Strong women such as Lady Bird Johnson and Fannie Lou Hamer made their voices heard and helped to change the course of events.
            “All the Way” was not just LBJ’s campaign slogan, but also captured the do-or-die mentality of all the players on the political battlefield. To what lengths would they go? What lines – political, legal and moral – were they prepared to cross? And at what cost? Each character in the film wrestles with these questions, and many are surprised by the personal discoveries they make.
            “I am pleased that, thanks to HBO, Robert Schenkkan’s Tony Award-winning play will now reach television,” says executive producer Steven Spielberg. “With Jay Roach directing and Bryan Cranston’s brilliant portrayal of LBJ, audiences will be able to share in this larger-than-life president’s role in a crucial turning point in American history.”
            Having directed “Recount” and “Game Change” for HBO, director Jay Roach was no stranger to politically themed films, and was attracted to ALL THE WAY for its revealing portrait of LBJ, showing the dichotomy of a man many consider to be one of the great leaders of all time. Yet on a personal level, Johnson was plagued by low self-esteem and haunted by fears of humiliation and loneliness. Roach saw ALL THE WAY as LBJ’s journey from his own private hell to the great arena of power and politics.
            “This story is as relevant in 2016 as it was when LBJ was thrust into office in 1963,” says Roach. “Racial inequality and discrimination once again dominate the headlines, and the country looks to political leaders with the power to make significant change. ALL THE WAY reminds us of a leader who stood for the rights of others despite the opposition and who surrounded himself with extraordinary people who shared his vision and worked to make it a reality.”
            ALL THE WAY was filmed in Los Angeles on sets designed by Mark Ricker, with costumes designed by Daniel Orlandi. Jim Denault is director of photography. Carol Littleton is editor. The striking physical transformations of the actors into their characters were designed and supervised by Bill Corso along with Frank Perez.

            Bryan Cranston’s Broadway debut in “All the Way” brought him a Tony Award, as well as Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle and Theater World Awards. He won four Emmy® Awards, a Golden Globe Award and three Screen Actors Guild Awards for his portrayal of Walter White in the mega-hit series “Breaking Bad,” and won an Emmy® and a Producers Guild of America Award as a producer on the series. On the big screen, Cranston shared a Screen Actors Guild Award as part of the cast of the Oscar®-winning 2012 film “Argo.”
            His latest film is Jay Roach’s “Trumbo,” in which he plays the title character Dalton Trumbo, the successful Hollywood screenwriter whose career came to an end when he was blacklisted in the 1940s McCarthy era for being a Communist. Cranston just received a Best Actor Golden Globe nomination and two Screen Actors Guild Award nominations for the film, in the categories Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Lead Role and Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture. He is currently in production on the independent film “Wakefield” and will begin production on “Why Him.” Cranston’s other feature film credits include “Drive,” “Godzilla,” “Contagion,” “Little Miss Sunshine” and “Saving Private Ryan.”
            Cranston’s other TV credits include “Malcolm in the Middle” (for which he was nominated for a Golden Globe and three Emmys®), “Seinfeld” and HBO’s Emmy®-winning miniseries “From the Earth to the Moon.” He has earned three Directors Guild of America nominations, for “Modern Family” and “Breaking Bad.” His production company, Moonshot Entertainment, has multiple productions in development, including the series “Sneaky Pete” for Amazon and “Supermansion” for Crackle.
            Anthony Mackie is a two-time Independent Spirit Award nominee, receiving a Best Supporting Actor nomination for the Oscar®-winning film “The Hurt Locker” and a Best Actor nomination for “Brother to Brother.” Mackie also shared a SAG nomination for Outstanding Performance by a Cast for “The Hurt Locker.” Discovered after receiving rave reviews while playing Tupac Shakur in the off-Broadway production “Up Against the Wind,” he made his film debut in Curtis Hanson’s “8 Mile,” which was quickly followed by the Spike Lee films “Sucker Free City” and “She Hate Me.”
            Mackie’s most recent films include “Our Brand Is Crisis,” “Love the Coopers,” “Shelter,” “The Night Before” and “Triple 9,” in addition to “Ant Man,” “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” the “Captain America” series, “The Fifth Estate,” “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter,” “The Adjustment Bureau,” “Notorious,” “Gangster Squad,” “Million Dollar Baby” and “The Manchurian Candidate.” His theatrical credits include “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom,” “The Seagull,” “McReele,” “A Soldier’s Play” and “Talk,” for which he received an Obie Award.
            Melissa Leo’s performance in “The Fighter” earned her an Academy Award®, a Golden Globe Award, a SAG Award and a Broadcast Film Critics Association Award, in addition to numerous regional film critics’ awards. Her starring role in “Frozen River” led to Oscar® and SAG Award nominations and a Best Female Lead win at the Independent Spirit Awards. Leo’s other film credits include “21 Grams,” “Oblivion,” “Welcome to the Rileys” and “The Cake Eaters.” On TV, Leo’s guest-starring performance on “Louie” won her an Emmy®; she also received an Emmy® nomination for HBO’s “Mildred Pierce.” Her other TV credits include “Wayward Pines,” HBO’s “Treme” and “BoJack Horseman.”
            Joe Morton won an Emmy® for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series for “Scandal.” His extensive TV credits also include “Grace and Frankie,” “The Good Wife,” “White Collar,” “Brothers & Sisters,” “Boston Legal,” “Numb3rs,” “Law & Order” and HBO’s “Miss Evers’ Boys.” Morton has appeared in such films as “American Gangster,” for which he shared a SAG nomination for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture, “Badland,” “Jasper, Texas,” “Apt Pupil,” “Blues Brothers 2000,” “Lone Star,” “Executive Decision,” ”Speed,” “The Good Mother” and “The Brother from Another Planet.”
            Frank Langella is a three-time Tony Award winner, for “Seascape,” “Fortune’s Fool” and “Frost/Nixon,” and received Oscar®, Golden Globe and SAG Award nominations for the film adaptation of “Frost/Nixon.” His film credits also include “Draft Day,” “Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps,” “Superman Returns,” “Goodnight, and Good Luck,” “Dave” and “Diary of a Mad Housewife,” which earned him a Best Supporting Actor Award from the National Board of Review; in the same year, he received the National Board of Review Best Supporting Actor Award for “The Twelve Chairs.” Langella’s numerous TV credits include “The Americans,” “Grace of Monaco,” “I, Leonardo: A Journey of the Mind,” for which he received an Emmy® nomination, and HBO Films’ “Muhammad Ali’s Greatest Fight.”

            ALL THE WAY marks Jay Roach’s fourth directorial outing with HBO. He previously helmed and executive produced the Emmy Award®-winning HBO Films presentations “Game Change” and “Recount,” both of which earned him Emmys® for Outstanding Directing and Outstanding Movie; “Game Change” also brought him a Golden Globe and a Peabody Award. Roach also directed the pilot for the HBO comedy series “The Brink,” which debuted last year, and served as an executive producer on the show.
            Roach’s feature-film directing credits include “Trumbo,” his most recent collaboration with Bryan Cranston, as well as “Meet the Parents,” the “Austin Powers” trilogy and “The Campaign.” His producing credits include, among others, “Little Fockers,” the Academy Award®-nominated “Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan,” “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy,” “Meet the Fockers,” “Meet the Parents” and the recent comedy “Sisters,” starring Tina Fey and Amy Poehler.
            Writer Robert Schenkkan is a Pulitzer-, Tony- and WGA Award-winning writer, two-time Emmy® nominee and prolific playwright, with work that spans stage, screen and television. His screenplays include Mel Gibson’s “Hacksaw Ridge” and Philip Noyce’s “The Quiet American,” while his work on the HBO miniseries “The Pacific” garnered him a WGA Award and two Emmy® and Humanitas Award nominations. Schenkkan’s other TV credits include “The Andromeda Strain,” “Crazy Horse” and “Spartacus.”
            In addition to “All the Way,” Schenkkan’s 14 plays include “The Great Society” (the sequel to “All The Way”), “By the Waters of Babylon,” “Handler,” “A Single Shard,” “The Devil and Daniel Webster,” “Lewis and Clark Reach the Euphrates,” “Final Passages,” “The Marriage of Miss Hollywood and King Neptune,” “Heaven on Earth,” “Tachinoki,” “The Dream Thief,” “Shadowplay” and “The Kentucky Cycle” (which received Pulitzer Prize, Tony Award and Drama Desk nominations), as well as a collection of one-act plays, “Conversations with the Spanish Lady,” and the musical (book and co-lyrics) “The Twelve.”
            Amblin Television is an independent television production company led by Steven Spielberg and co-presidents Darryl Frank and Justin Falvey. In addition to ALL THE WAY, the company is currently in production on season four of the FX series “The Americans,” starring Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys as KGB spies living in the US. The series has garnered two AFI Awards, a Peabody Award and a Critics’ Choice Award. Its upcoming productions include “American Gothic,” a mystery-thriller summer series for CBS, which revolves around a family that discovers their patriarch may be connected to a series of murders over the past few decades.
            Some of Amblin Television's (fka DreamWorks Television) past series include the hit summer series “Under the Dome” on CBS; the Noah Wyle series “Falling Skies,” which aired for five seasons on TNT; “Extant,” starring Halle Berry on CBS; the musical drama “Smash” on NBC; “United States of Tara,” starring Toni Collette, on Showtime; “The Borgias,” starring Jeremy Irons, on Showtime; “Las Vegas,” starring James Caan, which ran for five seasons on NBC; and the cult classic “Freaks and Geeks,” from Judd Apatow and Paul Feig, for NBC.
            Amblin has produced four longform/miniseries projects, receiving program Emmy® nominations for all four, and winning for three. Those productions include “Into the West,” an epic limited series from executive producer Steven Spielberg, which received the most Emmy® nominations in 2006, with 16 nominations; HBO’s “Band of Brothers,” an American war drama miniseries based on historian Stephen E. Ambrose’s nonfiction book of the same name, which was nominated for 20 Emmys® and won seven, including an Emmy® for Best Miniseries; HBO’s “The Pacific,” which was nominated for 24 Emmys® and won eight, including Best Miniseries; and “Taken,” the epic 20-hour miniseries for the SyFy Channel, which won an Emmy® in 2002 for Best Miniseries and was nominated for a Golden Globe in the same category.


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