The 2016 election cycle has been nothing if not exciting. From the hard fought battle between Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton to Donald Trump’s brutish domination of the Republican field, rarely has their been a day without CNN-worthy excitement. Whether the election cycle ends up being appropriately titled Citizen Trump or The Once and Future Yasss Kween, this election is one that will definitely get the Hollywood treatment. We got to thinking about which Hollywood silver fox should portray Bill Clinton and which craggy everyman should step into John Kasich’s worn out shoes. Here is our attempt at Casting the 2016 Election.
Donald Trump Daniel Day-LewisGetty Images
Yes, we think that Daniel Day-Lewis is far too handsome to play Trump as well, but let’s face it: the Donald is so distinctive that anyone who dons the wig tto portray him will have to do so underneath layers of prosthetics. It will take a talented character actor to get underneath Trump’s orange skin and figure out what makes the sociopathic steak monger tick without looking completely like a cartoon character. Johnny Depp already gave it a shot with Funny or Die, and though his performance was credible, all those years of Disney movies have made him even larger than larger than life. So, let’s give Daniel Day-Lewis a show. The part isn’t really that much different than Bill the Butcher (Gangs of New York) or Daniel Plainview (There Will Be Blood) anyway.
Hillary Clinton Glenn CloseGetty Images
The A-list competition to play Hillz would be fierce, and while Meryl Streep and Emma Thompson would both surely kill to the women who will likely wear the pantsuits in this country for the next eight years, we have to give the edge to Close. If you’ve seen her work in Damages or The Shield, you know that this milieu is not problem for her. Though Meryl is a famed chameleon, we think that Glenn Close would look better with hot sauce in her bag and “Yass Kween!” on her lips.
Bernie Sanders Larry DavidNBC
There may be more experienced actors auditioning for the role, but after you see David’s Sanders impression, how could you choose anybody else? From the shouted-deli-order tone to the hand motions of a man who has had to hail one too many cabs in his day, Larry David has nailed Bernie impression like no one else could ever hope to.
Bill Clinton Bill PaxtonGetty Images
If you’ve seen Big Love, you know that Bill Paxton has the charisma to portray a political leader (though that one had three wives instead of one wife and an array of side pieces). Coming off of playing Sam Houston in Texas Rising, Paxton will have to shift his accent up a state or two, but otherwise, the role should be a pretty seamless fit.
Paul Ryan Jake GyllenhaalGetty Images
With his recently history of playing troubled, morally ambiguous men in films like Nightcrawler and Demolition, the Brokeback Mountain star could take on his greatest challenge yet: the Debt Ceiling. Who better to capture the tortured soul of a fiscal hawk forced to contemplate spending trillions of dollars on a dumbass wall? At the very least you know Gyllenhaal would kill the scene where Ryan does p90x shirtless while listening to back episodes of “Marketplace.”
Ted Cruz Sean Penn
It might take a few tubs of Ben & Jerry’s and a dozen trips to Whataburger for Sean Penn to get the jawls that look like those that belong to the Mouth of the New South. Yes, the actor who played Harvey Milk has politics that are the opposite of the Texas Senator who spends most of his time thinking about how angry he would be if a trans person used the bathroom at his favorite Applebee’s. Yes, Penn has spent more time visiting Mexican druglords than doing credible acting as of late. But, when you consider that Penn has played a Southern demagogue before in All the King’s Men, the casting makes far more sense than any of Ted Cruz’s policies.
Ben Carson Wendell PierceGetty Images
Fresh off of playing a conservative that some people actually take seriously (Pierce portrays Clarence Thomas in HBO’s Confirmation), television veteran Wendell Pierce would make his big splash on the big screen as Dr. Ben Carson. Pierce has proven that he can handle comedy (The Odd Couple, The Michael J. Fox Show) and compelling drama (The Wire, Treme). He’ll need both to portray the softspoken doctor who should consider himself lucky that we can’t understand much of what he’s saying.
Carly Fiorina Allison JanneyGetty Images
Your girl would need a cut and dye job, but the comedy legend would bring just the right combination of delusion and awkwardness to the role. In her best known political role, Janney played a character on the other side of the aisle (C.J. Craig on The West Wing), but that shouldn’t stop the actress who has stolen the show in everything she touches, from The Way Way Back to Juno, from owning the part of the failed C.E.O. turned failed Presidential candidate turned failed Vice Presidential candidate Carly Fiorina.
Marco Rubio Michael PenaGetty Images
Marco Rubio and Michael Pena came into national stardom right around the same time. You probably know Pena best from Ant-Man and The Martian, but he’s worked for years as a character actor in projects as varied as The Shield and Eastbound and Down. Pena has the comedic chops to portray Rubio’s blustering downfall with just the right amount of hilarious pathos. If you don’t believe me, go watch season two of Eastbound and Down immediately and watch how he works opposite Kenny Powers (Danny McBride).
Jeb Bush Will FerrellGetty Images
With all of his experience playing his brother, its time for Will Ferrell to move on to the more muted Bush. Though Ferrell is best remembered for his huge performances, in movies like Stranger Than Fiction he proved he can be funny even when a bit of nuance is required. Besides, after he had to back out of a planned Ronald Reagan comedy, Ferrell deserves a neocon consolation prize.
John Kasich Chris CooperGetty Images
People don’t talk about veteran character actor Chris Cooper as much as they did at the turn of the century when he delivered powerhouse performances in American Beauty and Adaptation basically back to back. With recent appearances in Demolition and 11.22.63 Cooper might be back in the top tier of supporting actors in time to play the role one look at his face tells you he was meant to play: Ohio Governor / area vagrant John Kasich.
We had liberals blind-taste test some of Trump’s best wine. The results will surprise you.