Michael Douglas to Star as Benjamin Franklin in Apple TV+ Limited Series

The series will be based on the book “A Great Improvisation: Franklin, France, and the Birth of America”

Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Hollywood Foreign Press Association

Michael Douglas is embodying Benjamin Franklin…again.

The “Kominsky Method” actor will star as the founding father for an upcoming Apple TV+ limited series, which will be based on the book “A Great Improvisation: Franklin, France, and the Birth of America” by Pulitzer Prize winner Stacy Schiff.

“The drama will explore the thrilling story of one of the greatest gambles of Benjamin Franklin’s career. At age 70, without any diplomatic training, Franklin convinced France – an absolute monarchy – to underwrite America’s experiment in democracy,” the logline for the series reads.

“By virtue of his fame, charisma, and ingenuity, Franklin outmaneuvered British spies, French informers, and hostile colleagues, all while engineering the Franco-American alliance of 1778 and the final peace with England of l783. The eight-year French mission stands as Franklin’s most vital service to his country, without which America would not have won the Revolution.”

Kirk Ellis will write and executive produce. The series will be directed by Tim Van Patten, who will also serve as executive producer alongside Douglas, Richard Plepler, Tony Krantz and Mark Mostyn. Schiff will be a co-executive producer.

The series is a co-production of ITV Studios America and Apple Studios.

Douglas previously voiced Franklin in the PBS documentary series “Freedom: A History of the US” alongside a parade of other famed actors, including Tom Hanks as Abraham Lincoln, Morgan Freeman as Frederick Douglass and Anthony Hopkins as George Washington.

The Emmy Award-winning actor’s other TV credits include “Behind the Candelabra” and “The Streets of San Francisco.” He also has two Academy Awards, one as producer of “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” and a second as Lead Actor in “Wall Street.”

Douglas is repped by UTA. Ellis is repped by ICM Partners, attorney Bob Myman and Truline Entertainment, and Van Patten is repped by CAA and Range Media Partners.