All hail the holy casting gods: Annette Bening will star in “Katrina: American Crime Story,” according to an FX press release circulated on Monday.
Bening is set to play Kathleen Blanco, the former Louisiana governor who was heavily criticized for her handling of the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Bening is the first star officially announced for Ryan Murphy’s follow-up to “The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story,” though the director has also said that company player Sarah Paulson will have a role.
As a Louisiana native who lived there during Katrina, let me tell you: Bening’s casting is perfect. Blanco found herself embroiled in a power struggle with New Orleans mayor Ray Nagin and George W. Bush’s administration, resulting in an under-resourced region reeling from one of the country’s most devastating natural disasters in history. Blanco, a Democrat whose popularity dipped after Katrina, opted not to seek re-election in 2007. Watch her announcement video below ― you can imagine Bening word for word, channeling Blanco’s hostile poise and bob hairdo.
“Katrina: American Crime Story” is slated to air in 2018, according to FX Networks CEO John Landgraf. The series’ next installment, chronicling the Gianni Versace murders, will quickly follow.