Copious Notes

In F-bomb loaded rant, Lexington’s Michael Shannon says he’d never play Trump

Actor Michael Shannon, shown at the Cannes Film Festival in May, has told Playboy he would never play President Donald Trump in no uncertain words.
Actor Michael Shannon, shown at the Cannes Film Festival in May, has told Playboy he would never play President Donald Trump in no uncertain words. Invision/AP

Oscar nominee and Lexington native Michael Shannon has played a wide range of film and stage roles, including the despicable villain in last year’s Academy Award winner for best picture, “The Shape of Water.”

But there is a role he says he will not touch: the current President of the United States, Donald Trump.

And the actor, whose roles have included General Zod in “Man of Steel” (2013) and Elvis Presley in “Elvis & Nixon” (2016) does not mince words in the September issue of Playboy.

“F— that guy,” he said, discussing the President in comments that have not been published by Playboy yet, but that have been widely circulated by a number of outlets and on social media.

Here’s an expletive-loaded excerpt published by Entertainment Weekly:

Playboy: There’s no part of you that would want to play Trump?

Shannon: No.

Playboy: Just to get inside his head? You talked about being fascinated by bad men who are suffering.

Shannon: How do you mean? Is he suffering?

Playboy: You don’t think Trump struggles with demons?

Shannon: He’s having a blast! Are you f—ing kidding me? That guy is having so much fun.

Playboy: And there’s no self-doubt or fear?

Shannon: He’s having the time of his f—ing life. He doesn’t even have to work. All the hard work that most people have to do to be president of the United States, he just f—ing skipped all that. The f—ing guy doesn’t even know what’s in the Constitution. He doesn’t have any grasp of history or politics or law or anything. He’s just blindfolded throwing darts at the side of a bus.

In the excerpt, Shannon goes on to speculate what Trump is thinking at 4 o’clock in the morning, which would be hard for us to publish, even with copious dashes.

It is not the first time Shannon has colorfully commented on Trump. Shortly after the 2016 election, he told Metro News it was old people that voted for Trump and added, “No offense to the seniors out there. My mom’s a senior citizen. But if you’re voting for Trump, it’s time for the urn.”

When the interviewer said he was having trouble talking to his Trump-supporting parents, Shannon said, “F— ’em. You’re an orphan now.”

Lexington native Michael Shannon and Sally Hawkins star in “The Shape of Water.” Kerry Hayes

That interview was ahead of the release of “Nocturnal Animals,” for which Shannon earned his second Oscar nomination for best supporting actor. His first was for 2008’s “Revolutionary Road.”

Shannon, 44, was born in Lexington and got some of his first stage experience with groups such as Actors Guild of Lexington. He split his teenage years between Lexington and Chicago, where he is still active in the theater community, before becoming a well regarded character actor in films.

Some of his recent work has included HBO’s version of the Ray Bradbury classic, “Fahrenheit 451,” and “12 Strong,” about the first Special Forces team deployed to Afghanistan after 9/11.

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