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John Lithgow to play Roger Ailes in Jay Roach’s upcoming Fox News movie

on August 22, 2018, 3:47pm

John Lithgow can play one helluva villain. Just look at him in any number of Brian De Palma movies, or even his monstrous turn in Dexter’s fourth season. Now, however, the acclaimed actor will play his most vile character yet, as Variety reports he’s been cast as former Fox News chief/rabid sexual harasser Roger Ailes.

Director Jay Roach (Trumbo) will helm Annapurna Pictures’ as-yet-unnamed film, which was written by Oscar-winning screenwriter Charles Randolph (The Big Short). Charlize Theron and Nicole Kidman will co-star, playing Fox News vets Megyn Kelly and Gretchen Carlson, respectively. Both women were key in exposing the pervasive culture of sexual harassment at Fox News, which forms the spine of the Roach and Randolph’s story. Margot Robbie is also set to star in the movie as “a fictional Fox News associate producer.”

After Carlson sued him for harassment in July of 2016, Ailes stepped down from his role as Chairman and CEO of Fox News. Many more allegations of misconduct followed his departure. He passed away roughly a year later at the age of 77.

As Variety notes, Ailes’ story will also appear in Showtime’s adaptation of Gabriel Sherman’s The Loudest Voice In the Room. Russell Crowe will step into the Ailes’ formidable loafers for that production.

Lithgow, meanwhile, is still basking in the Emmy he won for his work as Winston Churchill on Netflix’s The Crown, and he’ll soon show his range as wizened old-timer Judd Crandall in a new adaptation of Stephen King’s Pet Sematary.

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