Some of Hollywood’s finest actresses have played first ladies in film and television. One of the loudest Oscar buzzes of 2016 is for Natalie Portman as Jackie Onassis in Jackie. Critics across the board have lauded the Academy Award winning actress’s depiction of the iconic first lady in the days following husband John F. Kennedy’s assassination in 1963. Portman is not the first actress to receive critical praise for her performance as a first lady. Here are 13 of the best performances in television and film by an actress playing a real-life first lady.
Many of the movies and shows on this list feature the first lady as a secondary character to her president husband. However, some of the items are straight up first lady biopics. Jackie, The Betty Ford Story, and The Magnificent Doll all focus on the FLOTUS and her dramatic arc. Portrayals of historical characters in movies and TV are all over the map, but these women knocked it out of the park.
American audiences have always been fascinated by historical characters in movies and television. Legends like Patty Duke and Sally Field are just a few of the renowned actresses who have portrayed America’s most iconic first ladies. If your favorite actresses to play a first lady is missing, let the world know in the comments section below.