Gentlemen, Start Your Beards 

"Lincoln" casting, celeb watch begin in earnest.

  • Land of Nod Studios (Flickr, Creative Commons)

Wanted: whiskers, manes and mutton chops.

On Friday, July 22, the production company behind the new Abraham Lincoln biopic is holding an all-day casting call for male extras 20 and older. "If you're interested and presently have long hair and/or a beard, or you are able to stop shaving and cutting your hair until the casting director comes to the area next week," come to the convention center between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m., the Virginia Film Office's notice says. Bring a photo.

A recent Richmond casting call for young Tad, Lincoln's son, brought 614 boys, aged 7 to 9, to the convention center, says Virginia Film Commissioner Rita McClenny. The final pick hasn't yet been announced.

Even if you don't get a chance to be in the movie, you'll soon be seeing stars. The Steven Spielberg-directed "Lincoln" begins filming in Richmond in October. Speaking on 1140-AM WRVA this week with Style Weekly Editor-in-Chief Jason Roop, McClenny revealed some more big names that will be joining the cast.

James Spader will play a congressman who served in Lincoln's cabinet, she says. (Spader's a busy man; he's also appearing in the new season of "The Office" as the company's chief executive.) David Strathairn, who was Oscar-nominated for "Good Night and Good Luck" and appeared in "The Bourne Ultimatum," will play Secretary of State William H. Seward.

Other actors attached to "Lincoln": Daniel Day-Lewis, Sally Field, Tommy Lee Jones, Hal Holbrook and Joseph Gordon-Levitt ("Inception"), whom "all the women love," McClenny says. They won't all be in Richmond at the same time, she says, but will begin arriving here in late September. A quick hint for star watchers: actors typically eat midday meals on set, but you can count on seeing them at Richmond's best restaurants for dinner.


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