Robin Williams to Play President Eisenhower: His Other Serious Roles

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Comedy is taking a backseat for Robin Williams for the foreseeable future: The actor is set to play former President Dwight D. Eisenhower in Lee Daniels' upcoming film "The Butler." The film will focus on Eugene Allen, a White House staffer that served eight presidents during his tenure. Forest Whitaker is tapped to play Allen. Other cast members include Oprah as his wife, Jon Cusack as Richard Nixon, Alan Rickman as Ronald Reagan and Jane Fonda as Nancy Reagan. Minka Kelly and James Marsden are also rumored to be starring as John Kennedy and Jackie Kennedy.

All star cast, eh?

We're used to seeing Williams in comedic roles, but he's no stranger to drama. Let's examine some of his best serious acting.

"Good Will Hunting"

"Good Will Hunting" is known as the film that introduced us to Boston best friends Matt Damon and Ben Affleck, but Robin Williams was also in the film (and won an Oscar for his role!) Williams played Sean Macguire in the film, a psychiatrist that takes to Damon's troubled math genius and they form a significant friendship.

Just how good was Williams in the film? Check it out for yourself.

"Patch Adams"

Williams' 1998 film "Patch Adams" was inspired by the true story of Dr. Hunter "Patch" Adams, a man who "treats patients illegally, using humor." It's a poignant story that uses comedy to get the point across, but not Williams' typical physical comedy - it's more nuanced than that. See him in action with this clip.

The film was a success with audiences and earned more than $135 million at the box office on a $50 million budget.

"Dead Poet's Society

The 1989 film "Dead Poet's Society" was Williams' first foray into drama. He played poet John Keating in the film and "inspires his students to a love of poetry and to seize the day," according to the official synopsis.

One of his most famous speeches from the film was the "Seize the Day" monologue - check it out and see why he was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actor, along with a BAFTA and Golden Globe.

What is your favorite Robin Williams film?

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