John Oliver Got Anna Kendrick to Star in Warren G. Harding’s Life Story

Jul 03, 2017

When Gettysburg’s Hall of Presidents shut down back in January, Rachel Maddow bought the wax version of Dwight D. Eisenhower and Stephen Colbert bought a life-size Zachary Taylor. According to John Oliver, Colbert really wanted Martin Van Buren, but someone beat him to it — Jon Stewart, who bought the doll just to mess with his former colleague, or perhaps as Oliver guessed, to “add to his ever expanding mannequin sex dungeon.”

For his part, Oliver didn’t want to go down to Gettysburg to buy one — he bought five. “We are five times stupider than any other TV show,” said Oliver.

He managed to snag unsettling plastic versions of Richard Nixon, Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, William Henry Harrison, and, Oliver’s favorite, Warren G. Harding. Harding has an incredible life story, according to Oliver, and it was only a matter of time before someone made a movie about him. Oliver decided to beat them to it, casting the eerie wax figure of Harding in the lead role. Some how Oliver convinced four Oscar nominated actors to play opposite the wax doll with Anna Kendrick, Laura Linney, Campbell Scott, James Cromwell, and Michael McKean all joining the cast to help tell the story of Harding.

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