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article imageWill Ferrell to play Ronald Reagan; late president's kids angry

By Marcus Hondro     Apr 28, 2016 in Entertainment
Will Ferrell is about to take on what might be his most controversial role yet — playing Ronald Reagan. Two of the former U.S. president's children have expressed anger about it, saying the script is in poor taste and makes fun of Alzheimer's Disease.
Ferrell as President
Multiple media sources from L.A., including The Hollywood Reporter, say they've confirmed Ferrell is set to take on the role. The script, by TV writer Mike Rosolio (Lemmings) does not yet have a director attached but will be produced by Ferrell's company, Gary Sanchez Productions.
Before Ferrell became attached to the project, The Black List, an industry collection of script writers, buyers and reps, held a live table reading of Reagan that featured James Brolin as Reagan and John Cho as an intern working to convince Reagan he's still an actor playing the part of the president in a movie.
"When Ronald Reagan falls into dementia at the start of his second term," the Black List said in describing the script. "An ambitious intern is tasked with convincing the Commander-In-Chief that he is an actor playing the President in a movie."
Reagan family reacts
There's no date set on when a director will come on board or when they will go to camera. However, even before that takes place there is heavy criticism being directed at the project by one of Reagan's son's, Michael Reagan (from his first wife, Jane Wyman) and by one of his daughter's, Patti Davis (from his second wife, Nancy Reagan).
Michael Reagan tweeted that all involved should be "ashamed" while his half-sister posted lengthy remarks on her website.
"Perhaps you have managed to retain some ignorance about Alzheimer's and other versions of dementia. Perhaps if you knew more, you would not find the subject humorous," Davis wrote in part.
"Alzheimer's doesn't care if you are President of the United States or a dockworker. It steals what is most precious to a human being — memories, connections, the familiar landmarks of a lifetime that we all come to rely on to hold our place secure in this world and keep us linked to those we have come to know and love.
"I watched as fear invaded my father’s eyes — this man who was never afraid of anything," she added. "I heard his voice tremble as he stood in the living room and said, 'I don’t know where I am.' I watched helplessly as he reached for memories, for words, that were suddenly out of reach and moving farther away."
As of this writing there's been no public response to the criticism from Ferrell or anyone connected to the movie project. Ronald Reagan died on June 5 of 2004 of pneumonia and Alzheimer's Disease.
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