Not that anyone was expecting Steven Spielberg's upcoming Lincoln to be anything like Timur Bekmambetov's Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, but the first poster for the film makes clear the distinctions.
No vampires. No executions by the Chief Executive. No hands-on violence.
Instead, we have a very safe, very dignified, very much expected portrait of a president. From a marketing perspective, it makes sense: Communicate the idea that this is an award-worthy film, A Very Serious Film From A Very Important Filmmaker Starring A Very Good Actor -- Please Give Us Academy Awards. And the prospect of an excellent performance by Daniel Day-Lewis is probably the one thing that may draw in those who are not entranced by the prospect of Mr. Spielberg giving history a rosy glow.
While I'm concerned about Spielberg's increasing tendency toward sentimentalization, he is an exceptionally talented filmmaker, and I'm hoping that Tony Kushner's work on the screenplay (for which Paul Webber is also credited, based on a book by Doris Kearns Goodwin) will yield something far more interesting than a straightforward historical portrait.
Lincoln releases in the U.S. on November 9.