Killing Lincoln (film)

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Killing Lincoln
Film poster
Based onKilling Lincoln
by Bill O'Reilly
Developed byTony Scott
Written byErik Jendresen
Directed byAdrian Moat
Presented byTom Hanks
StarringBilly Campbell
Jesse Johnson
Composer(s)David Buckley
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
Executive producer(s)Mark Herzog
Erik Jendresen
Bill O'Reilly
Mary Lisio
Teri Weinberg
David W. Zucker
Producer(s)Ridley Scott
Tony Scott
Christopher G. Cowen
CinematographyJeremy Benning
Running time90 minutes
Production company(s)Scott Free Productions
Herzog & Company
Original networkNational Geographic Channel
Original releaseFebruary 17, 2013 (2013-02-17)
External links

Killing Lincoln is an American television film inspired by the 2011 book of the same name by Bill O'Reilly and Martin Dugard. This two-hour political docudrama contains events surrounding the presidency and assassination of U.S. President Abraham Lincoln. It was originally broadcast on National Geographic Channel on February 17, 2013. Narrated and hosted by American actor Tom Hanks, the film stars Billy Campbell as President Lincoln and Jesse Johnson as John Wilkes Booth. It was written and executive produced by Erik Jendresen (Band of Brothers), directed by Adrian Moat (Gettysburg), produced by Chris Cowen, Mark Herzog, Ridley Scott, Tony Scott, Mary Lisio, David Zucker, and Terri Weinberg.

The docudrama was aired in memorial tribute to producer Tony Scott, who was developing the film at the time of his death. The program averaged 3.4 million viewers, scoring about 1 million viewers in the 25–54 demographic. This is currently National Geographic's highest-rated television airing surpassing Inside 9/11, which drew 3 million in August 2005.[1]

Killing Lincoln was made available on Blu-ray Disc on June 11, 2013. It features commentary by Erik Jendresen, an interview with Bill O'Reilly, and multiple behind-the-scenes featurettes.[2]


In January 2012, it was announced that Bill O'Reilly will be executive producing a two-hour documentary for National Geographic Channel inspired by his New York Times best selling novel Killing Lincoln: The Shocking Assassination That Changed America Forever.[3] In addition, filmmaking brothers Tony and Ridley Scott became attached to the project as producers.[4]

Principal photography began in July 16, 2012, in Richmond, Virginia.[5] It was at this time in which actor Billy Campbell was announced to play President Abraham Lincoln.[6] On August 19, 2012, producer Tony Scott committed suicide.[7] The film was dedicated in his memory.[8]

On September 13, 2012, Tom Hanks was announced as the film's "host, narrator and historical commentator".[9]




Killing Lincoln aired on February 17, 2013, on National Geographic Channel, setting records for the cable network. The network's first factual drama project, Killing Lincoln's 3.4 million viewers[11] was NGC's single highest telecast viewership since its launch in late 1997, only to be topped by 3000 viewers by Killing Kennedy on November 10, 2013. The viewership was especially high for individual broadcasts, with a 175 percent increase from typical broadcasts in that time slot.[12]

Critical response[edit]

The television film received mixed feedback from critics. Metacritic, which assigns a weighted average score out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, reports the film with a score of 57 based on 15 reviews.[13]


  1. ^ "Bill O'Reilly's 'Killing Lincoln' Sets NatGeo Ratings Record". The Inquistir. February 21, 2013. Retrieved February 24, 2013.
  2. ^ "Killing Lincoln Blu-ray". April 24, 2013. Retrieved April 25, 2013.
  3. ^ Adams, Cindy (January 17, 2012). "Ricky puts home viewers first". New York Post. Retrieved March 7, 2013.
  4. ^ Fleming Jr., Mike (January 26, 2012). "National Geo Channel Buys Sundance Docu 'Chasing Ice'". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved March 7, 2013.
  5. ^ "Killing Lincoln hires Richmond stunt coordinator". Richmond Stunts. July 15, 2012. Archived from the original on December 24, 2013. Retrieved March 7, 2013.
  6. ^ Goldberg, Lesley (July 16, 2012). "'The Killing's' Billy Campbell Leads Cast of NGC's 'Killing Lincoln'". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved March 7, 2013.
  7. ^ Michael, Cieply (August 20, 2012). "Tony Scott, Director Versed in Action, Dies at 68". New York Times. Retrieved March 7, 2013.
  8. ^ Szklarski, Cassandra (February 14, 2013). "Killing Lincoln melds documentary and drama for 'new animal' says Campbell". Waterloo Region Record. Retrieved March 7, 2013.
  9. ^ Carlson, Erin (September 13, 2012). "Tom Hanks to Narrate Tony Scott's 'Killing Lincoln'". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved March 7, 2013.
  10. ^
  11. ^ Hibberd, James (February 18, 2013). "'Killing Lincoln' gives NatGeo record ratings". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved March 6, 2013.
  12. ^ O'Connell, Michael (February 18, 2013). "TV Ratings: 'Killing Lincoln' Pulls Record 3.4 Million to Nat Geo". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved March 6, 2013.
  13. ^ "Killing Lincoln – Season 1 Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved March 7, 2013.

External links[edit]

See also[edit]