The comedian and actor will portray Dwight D Eisenhower and joins an ensemble that includes Forest Whitaker, Oprah Winfrey, Vanessa Redgrave, Terrence Howard, John Cusack and Alan Rickman.
Shooting is set to being later this month in New Orleans based on the life of Eugene Allen, the White House butler who served eight First Families over three decades.
Danny Strong wrote the screenplay with Daniels based on Wil Haygood’s Washington Post article about Allen. Daniels is producing with Hilary Shor, Cassian Elwes and Pam Williams for Laura Zisken Productions.
IM Global virtually sold out international rights at Cannes where The Butler was the most high-profile US arthouse project on offer.
As reported exclusively by Screendaily from Cannes, Williams will also star in comedy The Angriest Man In Brooklyn opposite Mila Kunis, Peter Dinklage, Melissa Leo and James Earl Jones.
Production is scheduled to begin in September in the eponymous New York borough on the story of a patient who goes on the rampage after he is mistakenly told he has 90 minutes to live.
Phil Alden Robinson will direct from a screenplay by Daniel Taplitz. Landscape’s Bob Cooper and Tyler Mitchell are producing with Daniel J Walker. Jean-Charles Levy serves as executive producer and Cargo Entertainment launched pre-sales in Cannes where it enjoyed a strong response.
Williams is represented by WME and MBST Entertainment.