Ryan Murphy is going back to the ’90s for his next project. American Crime Story: Impeachment, his upcoming miniseries, will dive into the days leading up to Bill Clinton’s 1999 impeachment, triggered when the world learned about his affair with Monica Lewinsky. While casting is still coming together, a handful of actors have already been tapped for key roles, teeing up hype for FX’s hotly anticipated project. Here’s a handy guide to the stars in the show and how they stack up to their real-life counterparts.
Clive Owen as Bill Clinton
The Oscar-nominated Brit will have to mask his accent to play the Arkansas-born-and-bred president, who became embroiled in controversy after admitting to having an affair with Lewinsky. His casting may seem like a left-field choice at first, but it’s easy to see how some hair and makeup magic could transform the actor into Clinton’s spitting image. “It will be hugely challenging,” Owen told Collider of the role. “There’s something terrifying about it, but what you do it is go in there and test yourself.”
Beanie Feldstein as Monica Lewinsky
The 26-year-old Booksmart star has been tapped to play Lewinsky, the White House intern at the heart of the scandal. (Lewinsky has since become an anti-bullying activist and a Vanity Fair contributor.) The political figure is a producer on American Crime Story: Impeachment, which means Feldstein already has Lewinsky’s blessing: “I’m just beyond honored and I’m very excited,” she told Vanity Fair last year.
Sarah Paulson as Linda Tripp
If it’s a Ryan Murphy joint, you know Paulson is involved. The actress, who’s starred in just about every Murphy series of note, will play Linda Tripp, the U.S. civil servant who was Lewinsky’s confidante—before handing over recordings of calls with Lewinsky to independent counsel Kenneth Starr. Paulson, who has a different physical build than Tripp, has already said she plains to gain weight for the role. “I don’t feel like it would be a great idea for me to come to work putting on some kind of faux suit and just all mucked up and not being able to move my face nor feel the feelings that she [Tripp] might have been feeling,” Paulson told People.
Billy Eichner as Matt Drudge
Speaking of the Murphyverse, here comes Billy Eichner. The comedian, who’s starred in two seasons of American Horror Story, is set to play Matt Drudge, founder of the eponymous online aggregator Drudge Report. He was the first person to break the news about the Lewinsky cheating scandal, securing Drudge’s place as a popular conservative source. Eichner himself confirmed his part in the series in the most Eichner way possible: in a since-deleted tweet linking to a Fox News article that reported the casting but used a photo of the wrong actor. “That’s not me you fucking idiots,” he wrote. “Great fact checking as always!”