Longing for a new face in presidential politics? How about Nick Nolte? Well, the star of such flicks as The Prince of Tides and A Walk in the Woods, takes a turn as a former POTUS in the new dramedy from EPIX Original Series, called Graves.The satirical show looks at how a president in his post White House year comes to the realization he was not such a great chief executive, after all (so clearly you’ll not run the risk of ever confusing the intriguing plot line with reality). President Richard Graves, a former two-term conservative president played by Nolte, embarks on a Don Quixote-like quest to right the wrongs of his administration and reclaim his legacy 25 years after leaving the White House. With issues ranging from immigration to gay rights, to foreign policy to public funding for arts and sciences, Graves holds nothing sacred as he unspools some of his administration’s proudest victories. His about-face takes place just as his wife Margaret Graves (Sela Ward, known for Independence Day: Resurgence, Gone Girl, Sisters ) decides it’s finally time to for her to pursue her own political ambitions.
Supporting cast includes Skylar Astin (Pitch Perfect, Pitch Perfect 2, “Ground Floor”) as over-eager assistant Isaiah Miller who goes to work for his political hero at the very moment that the ex-President is tearing down his legacy; Heléne Yorke (“Masters of Sex,” American Psycho) as self-destructive socialite daughter Olivia Rockefeller Graves; Chris Lowell (The Help, “Veronica Mars”) as son Jeremy Graves, just back from the war in Afghanistan; and Callie Hernandez (Sin City: A Dame To Kill For, Machete Kills) as the free-spirited waitress Samantha who becomes the President’s muse, encouraging him to break loose of previous beliefs. Recurring cast include Nia Vardalos (My Big Fat Greek Wedding) as Margaret’s no-nonsense campaign manager Annie Novak, and Ernie Hudson (Ghostbusters, “Grace & Frankie”) as “family fixer” Jacob Mann. There are some great cameos, too, with guest appearances from Bob Balaban (The Grand Budapest Hotel, Gosford Park) as Homeland Security Secretary Burns and Nora Dunn (Bruce Almighty) as reporter Laura Wolf.
At the screening this week hosted by, EPIX, Vanity Fair, and The Cinema Society were Nolte and Ward, who were joined by Skylar Astin, Heléne Yorke, Chris Lowell, Callie Hernandez, Ernie Hudson, Roger Bart, Dennis Christopher; executive producers Joshua Michael Stern and Greg Shapiro; Chris Bauer (True Blood, People v. OJ Simpson), Louisa Krause (Billions), Nikki M. James (BrainDead), Bobby Flay, Ben Platt (Pitch Perfect), Brenda Vaccaro, Bonnie Hunt, Richard Kind, Joel Marsh Garland (Orange is the New Black), Barbara Rosenblat (Orange is the New Black), Lin Tucci (Orange is the New Black), Elija Jacob (Feed the Beast), Beth Fowler (Orange is the New Black), Cas Anvar, Justin Pugh (NY Giants), Marshall Newhouse (NY Giants), Michael Steele (MSNBC), Fern Mallis, Daniel Benedict, Ashley Haas, EPIX President and CEO Mark Greenberg, Cinema Society founder Andrew Saffir. The after party was held at the Monkey Bar.