Dick, the Miniseries

Congratulations to Barton Gellman, whose book on Cheney’s abuse of the Constitution, Angler, will serve as the basis for an HBO miniseries.

HBO has optioned the book Angler: The Cheney Vice Presidency by Pulitzer-Prize winning journalist Barton Gellman for a miniseries to be executive produced by Paula Weinstein.

The mini, which will be based on the bestselling book and the Frontline documentary The Dark Side, tells the story of Richard Bruce Cheney from his early days as Donald Rumsfeld’s protégé in the Nixon administration, to the nation’s youngest Chief of Staff under President Ford, to serving as Secretary of Defense under George H.W. Bush, through two controversial terms as Vice President under President George W. Bush. According to the producers, the project will center on Cheney’s “single-minded pursuit of enhanced  power for the Presidency (that) was unprecedented in the nation’s history.”

May the story of this abusive thug be just as popular as the Sopranos.

Gellman is on twitter taking suggestions for a lead to play Cheney. Me, I’m more interested in finding the perfect actress to play the Constitution, some damsel in distress type who needs to be saved from the evil villain.

Since I’m a pop culture failure, I’m happy to hear your suggestions in comments.

  1. cbl says:

    I suggested Ed Harris – only because Richard Dreyfuss had already executed it beautifully in Stone’s ‘W’

    Scott Glenn wouldn’t do a bad job either

  2. Jeff Kaye says:

    Too bad Brando is dead.

    But since you need an actor who can span some of the life cycle, I’d go with Scott Glenn, or (and I think he could do it), Matt Damon, whose career must be needing a shot of character stretching at this point.

    I’d like to see what Johnny Depp could do with the role. He doesn’t look the part, but he could make it fun. And he’d have to gain weight.

      • Jeff Kaye says:

        Then Brando it is!

        Yet, when Michael mentioned Steve Buschemi, I thought yeah, b/c then it could be a Coen Bros. movie.

        But seriously, I too have to go with Malkovich (or Harrelson), or that nuclear reactor.

  3. merkwurdiglieber says:

    I hope you get a consulting slot for the screenplay, you know that

    son of a bitch as well as anyone, wrote the first book on him.

    • pdaly says:

      Bruce Davidson looks like Cheney, or at least he certainly smiles like Cheney–though not picturing Cheney smiling too much in this miniseries.

      For Woods, wouldn’t this be a step down? Woods has already played Hades, god of the Underworld.

  4. Mary says:

    For lack of a better life, I’ve watched some episode re-runs of Brotherhood and I say pad up Jacob Isaacs and off with his hair and he can do the “evil that thinks of itself as one of the good guys” pretty well.

  5. JTMinIA says:

    With regard to the woman to play the Constitution, they’ll probably need to hire an actress with a lot of porn experience, as no “regular” actress – at least, after reading the script – will be likely to agree.

  6. BoxTurtle says:

    Cheney: Played by Anthony Hopkins…but maybe voiced by James Earl Jones.

    The constitution would be played by Justin Bieber.

    Boxturtle (I mentioned Bieber above, I don’t think I need a paranthetical)

      • BoxTurtle says:

        Yeah, but then we’re back to a porn actress for the constitution. Or maybe a lawyer, there are some things even porn star won’t do for money.

        Boxturtle (Golly, that joke is old. I wish I had the willpower not to post it)

        • JTMinIA says:

          Could be worse. You could think that the joke was new and, therefore, make a fool of yourself repeating it.

        • scribe says:

          Wonder what Traci Lords is up to these days?

          She kinda crossed over to the legit side (though it was for John Waters).

  7. JohnLopresti says:

    ?How about Tina Fey as the constitution. I would write her into a part in several vignettes spliced into the principal theme atemporally, kind of like the sense of irreality in Resnais* **Last Year at Marienbad** (1961), which was a kind of modern theater of the absurd statement about film in the abstract.

  8. manys says:

    I’ll be surprised if this series comes out while Cheney is still alive, but on the other hand it’s not like he gives a crap what people think. I thought Jim Belushi did a good Armitage-by-any-other-name in “The Ghost Writer.”

  9. Arbusto says:

    As a pessimistic skeptic, HBO may fuck-up the screen play as they did with True Blood and make The Dick an unsung hero. See The Dick gallantly holding the Union together against an incompetent boss and invading hodes marauding Islamo-Fascists.

  10. BoxTurtle says:

    And if McLean Stevenson is still around, he’s a shoe-in to play bush.

    Boxturtle (If not, how about Larry, Darryl, or Darryl?)

  11. manys says:

    Frankly, it seems that all parts could be played by either James Woods or Richard Dreyfuss. A two-man show! It’ll be hard to beat the casting in “W” though. Is Richard Basehart still alive? He was always good at creepy authority.

  12. prostratedragon says:

    Glenn Close playing Lynn as Joan Rivers would.

    Amended: Gene Hackman has said he’s retired, but I wonder …

  13. Jim White says:

    Well, if they consulted with Cheney, he’d be torn between suggesting Chuck Norris and Todd Palin. But if you ask me, Cheney could be played most perfectly by Fukushima Daiichi reactor number 3 because he spews nothing but toxic, radioactive venom and has a severely crippled circulatory system.

  14. Michael Whitney says:

    Yeah, you win the Internet today for that, Jim.

    Also acceptable: Gary Busey. Just because.

    Or hey, Cheney is thin enough now that Steve Buschemi could play him.

  15. strangely enough says:

    Alec Baldwin as Cheney.

    the perfect actress to play the Constitution

    Monica Bellucci- she’s already got the experience of portraying someone violently sodomized and being nearly beaten to death in “Irreversible.”

  16. pdaly says:

    I think Tanya Harding would make a great Liz Cheney.

    And emptywheel would be the best black storm cloud hovering over the Whitehouse.

  17. SaltinWound says:

    The guy who is writing this is very good. A few years ago, he did a one man show about his friendship with Bill Clinton, part truth, part fiction. He is the sort of writer who will take some interesting chances.

  18. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Cheney and Addington’s defense will be that that sweet damsel, the Constitution, laid back and enjoyed it. She consented and therefore was not raped. Pity, though, about all those unavoidable bruises and punctures; they were essential in getting her to voluntarily submit.

    They will then point to the large peanut gallery that watched and enjoyed their frivolity: If you indict me, what about those guys? What about them, indeed.

  19. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Stacy Keach as Big Dick. Kevin Spacey as David Addington. Even better as Big Dick – Patrick Stewart.

  20. PJEvans says:

    Cheney should never be seen except in silhouette, or behind a curtain, or otherwise obscured. He’s almost always in an undisclosed location, so we probably shouldn’t need to see him.

  21. bobschacht says:

    I’m more interested in finding the perfect actress to play the Constitution, some damsel in distress type who needs to be saved from the evil villain.

    How about a sad-eyed waif? But I’m not au courant on actresses that look like that.

    Bob in AZ

  22. klynn says:

    This has been hysterical to read! I am crying from laughter.

    Marcy, I would only suggest one change in the title:

    Bad Aim: The Mini Dick Series.

    Kevin Beacon to play Scooter. Then a new edition of the game could be released!

    “Beacon” numbers here we come. At least this way something about the very bad could at least become a network for social good.

  23. bobschacht says:

    I think “The Shooter” is the perfect title. It matters not whether the target was hit, or even if one is shooting at the right target. What matters is that one shoot. That is all that really mattered to Dick the Hick. Shoot early, and shoot often. Shooting is more important than voting. It’s the American Way.

    Bob in AZ