Killing Lincoln Airdate Announced: Sunday, February 17 At 8pm ET/PT On The National Geographic Channel

  Killing Lincoln Airdate Announced: Sunday, February 17 At 8pm ET/PT On The
                         National Geographic Channel

PR Newswire

WASHINGTON, Jan. 24, 2013

The Most Dramatic Bullet Fired In American History: The Shot Killing Lincoln.

National Geographic Channel Adapts Bill O'Reilly's Best-Selling Book Into Its
First Original Scripted Drama, Narrated On Camera by Academy Award-Winning
Actor Tom Hanks

Billy Campbell Stars as Abraham Lincoln and Jesse Johnson as John Wilkes
Booth; Ridley Scott and Tony Scott Produce

WASHINGTON, Jan. 24, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --April 14, 1865. One
gunshot. One assassin hell-bent on killing "a tyrant," as he charged — the
16th president of the United States. And in one moment, our nation was
forever changed. This is the most dramatic and resonant crime in American
history: the true story of the killing of Abraham Lincoln.

Premiering during Presidents Day Weekend on Sunday, February 17, 2013 at 8
p.m. ET/PT, and encoring at 10 p.m., National Geographic Channel's first
original scripted drama, Killing Lincoln, presents one of the most significant
events in our country's history. With fresh historical insight, the film
thrillingly chronicles the final days of President Lincoln and the treasonous
plot by one the most notorious, yet complex villains of all time.Killing
Lincoln will also premiere globally on National Geographic Channel in March
2013, in 171 countries and38 languages. For more information, visit and follow us on Twitter at

Narrated on camera by Oscar^®-winning actor Tom Hanks, the film stars Billy
Campbell ("The Killing," "Once and Again") as Lincoln and introduces Jesse
Johnson in a breakthrough performance as John Wilkes Booth. Produced by
Ridley and Tony Scott's Scott Free Productions, the film adapts Bill
O'Reilly's best-selling book into a two-hour global television event.
Additional cast includes Geraldine Hughes as Mary Todd Lincoln, Graham Beckel
as Edwin Stanton, who served as secretary of war under the Lincoln
administration, and Shawn Pyfrom as Private John W. Nichols. Shot on location
in and around Richmond, Va., Killing Lincoln  is directed by director Adrian
Moat ("Gettysburg"), written by Emmy Award-winning writer/executive producer
Erik Jendresen ("Band of Brothers")and produced by Mark Herzog's Herzog & Co.

Killing Lincoln has all the components of a thrilling crime novel: conspiracy,
public assassination, an unprecedented manhunt. This is both an electrifying
look at a shadowy scheme cultivated during the rapid-fire succession of
closing Civil War events and a wrenching journey to understand a reviled

With the North all but assured of victory after four years of war, Southern
stalwart John Wilkes Booth is plotting vengeance. He views President Lincoln
as a tyrant eager to eradicate not just slavery, but the Southern way of life.
He launches a clandestine plot to kidnap the president and spirit him away to
the South — an under-the-cover-of-darkness mission that ultimately fails. But
out of that failure comes a dastardly new plan: to kill President Lincoln.
Booth's ultimate success in murder would shock a nation and spark the largest
manhunt in the country's young history.

"The prevailing image of Booth is one of a two-dimensional, mustache-twirling
villain," Johnson says. "My job was to dig deeper. Show that he was as
complex as a Shakespearean character he portrayed on the stage. Demonstrate
the artistry, obsession and Southern rigor as well as the virulent disdain for
an 'inferior' president that culminated into his own bloody, one-act play."

Says Campbell, "Lincoln is so adored, so universally revered today that it's
easy to forget he was a controversial president — one with many enemies — in
fact he repeatedly dreamt of his own assassination. We felt it important to
convey this hidden side of Lincoln, this sense of his almost wasting away with
premonitions of death, even as he was outwardly so poised and steadfast
through the closing of the war."

With palpable tension, the production dramatically counts down the president's
last days and actions leading up to the April 14 assassination at Ford's
Theatre: Lincoln has six weeks to live, days to survive, hours to breathe one
last time … and concludes with the aftermath of his murder.

The film opens in August 1864 — a year before his murder — as Abraham Lincoln
is riding his horse alone.A gunshot is fired and goes through his $8 top hat.
He has been in office four years and 41 days and the intensity of the hatred
level toward him, even by members of his own party, is extreme. Juxtaposed
with this is the following scene of John Wilkes Booth on stage performing, as
swords clash and the audience cheers wildly.

Viewers are then introduced to Booth's zealousness in a letter he writes and
asks his sister to lock in the safe: "right or wrong, god judge me, not man.…
My love as things stand today is for the South alone. Nor do I deem it a
dishonor in attempting to make for her a prisoner of this man [Lincoln] to
whom she owes so much misery."

On Tuesday, April 11, 1865, speaking to roaring crowds at the White House
after Robert E. Lee surrenders, Lincoln is within range of a pistol. Booth is
in attendance and promises that it will be Lincoln's final speech. The stage
is set: Abraham Lincoln has less than four days to live.

The "attack" time is set for 10:15 p.m. on April 15, 1865. Booth's
co-conspirators have their plan: Lewis Powell is to kill Secretary of State
Seward in his home on Lafayette Square; David Herold will then guide Powell
out of the city via the Navy Yard Bridge; George Atzerodt is to kill Vice
President Johnson at the Kirkwood House Hotel; and Booth will kill Lincoln at
Ford's Theatre.

After having a drink at the Star Saloon, Booth is admitted into the theater,
crosses underneath the stage and works his way up into the presidential box,
where he aims the pistol and fires the fatal shot at the President. Lunging
off the balcony, he runs to center stage and shouts, "Sic semper tyrannis!"

John Wilkes Booth has less than 12 days to live.

Executive producers are Tony Scott and Ridley Scott, as well as David W.
Zucker, Mary Lisio, Mark Herzog, Erik Jendresen and Bill O'Reilly. Directed
by Adrian Moat.Written by Erik Jendresen. Based on the book by Bill O'Reilly
and Martin Dugard. Produced by Christopher G. Cowen and Adrian Moat. Line
producer is Larry Rapaport. Narrated by Tom Hanks. Billy Campbell stars as
Abraham Lincoln, Jesse Johnson as John Wilkes Booth.Geraldine Hughes stars as
Mary Todd Lincoln, Graham Beckel as Edwin Stanton and Shawn Pyfrom as Private
John W. Nichols. For National Geographic Channel, executive producers are
Howard T. Owens, Charlie Parsons, Teri Weinberg and Richard E. Wells.

For more information, visit

About National Geographic Channel

Based at the National Geographic Society headquarters in Washington, D.C., the
National Geographic Channels US are a joint venture between National
Geographic and Fox Cable Networks. The Channels contribute to the National
Geographic Society's commitment to exploration, conservation and education
with smart, innovative programming and profits that directly support its
mission. Launched in January 2001, National Geographic Channel (NGC)
celebrated its fifth anniversary with the debut of NGC HD. In 2010, the
wildlife and natural history cable channel Nat Geo WILD was launched, and in
2011, the Spanish-language network Nat Geo Mundo was unveiled. The Channels
have carriage with all of the nation's major cable, telco and satellite
television providers, with NGC currently available in 84 million U.S. homes.
Globally, National Geographic Channel is available in 440 million homes in 171
countries and 38 languages. For more information, visit

About Scott Free Productions

Scott Free Productions was formed in 1995 and is the film and television
production vehicle of acclaimed film directors: brothers Ridley and Tony
Scott. Scott Free Television produces the Emmy® and Golden Globe®-nominated,
Peabody acclaimed drama, The Good Wife for CBS which is currently enjoying its
fourth season, and the eight-hour adaptation of

World Without End, Ken Follett's international best-seller featuring Cynthia
Nixon, Ben Chaplin and Miranda Richardson on Reelz. Scott Free also produced
the recent four-hour adaptation of Robin Cook's Coma for A&E, starring Lauren
Ambrose, Geena Davis, James Woods, Richard Dreyfuss and Ellen Burstyn, the
Emmy® and Golden Globe®-nominated mini-series The Pillars of The Earth for
Starz, the hit CBS show NUMB3RS, which ran for six seasons, the
Emmy®-nominated mini-series The Andromeda Strain, starring Benjamin Bratt and
Viola Davis, also for A&E, as well as the Golden Globe® nominated The Company
for TNT featuring Michael Keaton and Alfred Molina.

Upcoming is the film event Reykjavik, set to shoot next year starring Michael
Douglas as Ronald Reagan and Christoph Waltz as Mikhail Gorbachev, about the
now famous meeting between the two leaders that signaled the end of the Cold
War, and also an adaptation of Philip K. Dick's THE MAN IN THE HIGH CASTLE.
New projects in television development include Girls With Guns, written by The
Good Wife creators Robert and Michelle King, the 24 Hours at Le Mans drama,
Drivers, from Michael Hirst (The Tudors), as well as new drama projects from
Barbara Hall (Judging Amy) and Glenn Gordon Caron (Medium).

In addition to scripted fare, Scott Free has firmly established its nonfiction
presence by producing the epic Emmy®-winning documentary Gettysburg for
History Channel, and the upcoming documentary Killing Lincoln for National
Geographic Channel.

Scott Free Films most recently released Ridley Scott's visionary epic
Prometheus to worldwide acclaim, starring Noomi Rapace, Michael Fassbender and
Charlize Theron as well as the international hits The Grey, Tony Scott's
Unstoppable, and the YouTube backed sensation Life in a Day. Next for Scott
Free is Stoker, the English language debut of Park Chan Wook (Old Boy) at Fox
Searchlight, starring Nicole Kidman, Mia Wasikowska and Matthew Goode, The
East by director Zal Batmanglij starring Brit Marling, Alexander Skarsgard,
and Ellen Page also for Searchlight, Out of the Furnace at Relativity, written
and directed by Scott Cooper (Crazy Heart) starring Christian Bale, Woody
Harrelson, and Forest Whitaker, and The Counselor at Fox, which Ridley Scott
is currently directing from Cormac McCarthy's script, starring Michael
Fassbender, Cameron Diaz, Brad Pitt, Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem.

Scott Free has offices in Los Angeles and London in conjunction with RSA
Films, one of the world's largest and most successful commercial production

SOURCE National Geographic

Contact: Stephanie Montgomery, +1-202-912-6632,,
Jennifer DeGuzman, +1-212-378-1965,
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