Actor Leonardo DiCaprio is in early talks to produce and star in a biopic about President Woodrow Wilson, according to the Hollywood Reporter:
Warner Bros. is in early negotiations to pick up the rights to Wilson, the just-released biography of the 28th president by A. Scott Berg. Leonardo DiCaprio, who is attached to star as Wilson, will also produce the adaptation with Appian Way's Jennifer Davisson Killoran and Berg.
The book, which hit shelves last week, has received generally positive reviews for its intimate portrait of Wilson, who was elected president in 1912 and guided the nation through World War I.
Berg offers up a heroic, larger-than-life Wilson, emphasizing his progressive achievements like the creation of the Federal Reserve and his crusade in support of the Treaty of Versailles and the League of Nations while downplaying his weak record on civil liberties and civil rights for African Americans.
Wilson was bad on both domestic and foreign issues. In many ways, he was the first neoconservative.
Here's Ralph Raico's take on Wilson:
The term most frequently applied to Woodrow Wilson nowadays is "idealist." In contrast, the expression "power-hungry" is rarely used. Yet a scholar not unfriendly to him has written of Wilson that "he loved, craved, and in a sense glorified power." Musing on the character of the US government while he was still an academic, Wilson wrote: "I cannot imagine power as a thing negative and not positive." Even before he entered politics, he was fascinated by the power of the presidency and how it could be augmented by meddling in foreign affairs and dominating overseas territories. The war with Spain and the American acquisition of colonies in the Caribbean and across the Pacific were welcomed by Wilson as productive of salutary changes in our federal system. "The plunge into international politics and into the administration of distant dependencies" had already resulted in "the greatly increased power and opportunity for constructive statesmanship given the President."[..]
In large part Wilson's reputation as an idealist is traceable to his incessantly professed love of peace. Yet as soon as he became president, prior to leading the country into the First World War, his actions in Latin America were anything but pacific. Even Arthur S. Link (whom Walter Karp referred to as the keeper of the Wilsonian flame) wrote, of Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean: "the years from 1913 to 1921 [Wilson's years in office] witnessed intervention by the State Department and the navy on a scale that had never before been contemplated, even by such alleged imperialists as Theodore Roosevelt and William Howard Taft." The protectorate extended over Nicaragua, the military occupation of the Dominican Republic, the invasion and subjugation of Haiti (which cost the lives of some 2,000 Haitians) were landmarks of Wilson's policy. All was enveloped in the haze of his patented rhetoric of freedom, democracy, and the rights of small nations. The Pan-American Pact which Wilson proposed to our southern neighbors guaranteed the "territorial integrity and political independence" of all the signatories. Considering Wilson's persistent interference in the affairs of Mexico and other Latin states, this was hypocrisy in the grand style.
On the domestic front, during the Wilson presidency the Federal Reserve Act, Federal Trade Commission Act, the Clayton Antitrust Act, the Federal Farm Loan Act and an income tax, were all passed and signned by the president.