Anthony Mackie will play Martin Luther King, Jr. in HBO’s adaptation of Robert Schenkkan’s Broadway play, “All the Way,” which centers on then President Lyndon B. Johnson’s efforts to maneuver members of the 88th United States Congress to enact, and Martin Luther King, Jr. to support, the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
The play apparently takes its name from Johnson’s 1964 campaign slogan, “All the Way with LBJ.” It premiered on Broadway in March 2014, in a production directed by Bill Rauch, which won the 2014 Tony Award and Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Play.
Bryan Cranston won the Tony Award for Best Actor in a Play for his performance as LBJ, and he will also star in the HBO adaptation, which will be directed by Jay Roach, and executive produced by Steven Spielberg.
In the Broadway production, Martin Luther King, Jr. was played by Brandon J. Dirden.
Does Mackie’s casting in this Spielberg exec produced HBO project make him Spielberg’s top candidate for his long-in-development MLK-specific project – a role which, as Sergio reported on this blog earlier this month, was recently offered to David Oyelowo, who won acclaim for his performance in Ava DuVernay’s “Selma,” playing MLK?
The busy Mackie is currently filming “Captain America: Civil War.”
The news of Mackie’s casting in ‘All the Way’ was first reported by Deadline.