Why Damian Lewis should play Steve McQueen

News has it there’s a McQueen biopic in the works. And you know what we think, right? One actor comes to mind instantaneously as the best and only one to play Steve McQueen. Here, let’s make it easy with a list:

Top five reasons Damian Lewis MUST be considered to play Steve McQueen

1) Because he can. Damian Lewis can play American flawlessly. He can play repressed damaged Americans even more flawlessly. He makes the effort to thoughtfully understand the psychology of the roles he’s playing. He has an organic “real” look to him, coupled with an unparalleled plasticity, which allows him to become ANYBODY right before our eyes.

source: Showtime, Life Magazine
source: Showtime, Columbia Pictures, NBC

2) In their most notable roles, both Damian Lewis and Steve McQueen have played soldiers, prisoners, men on the fringes of polite society. Both Damian Lewis and Steve McQueen like cars. And they both look great on motorcycles and behind the wheels of nice automobiles.

source: Showtime
source: Life Magazine, RSA Films
source: Columbia Pictures, Showtime

3) Damian Lewis has freckles! He has vivid blue eyes, the same ruddy complexion, the same hair. He’s the same height. (okay DL is 3 inches taller, but who’s counting) Of course, playing a historical figure is about more than physical resemblance. But, you have to admit: here, the resemblance is extraordinary.
4) They even have the same slack-jawed expression when they look at the women they love.



Steve McQueen with his wife of 16 years Neile Adams. Damian Lewis with his wife Helen McCrory. source: Life Magazine, British Vogue

5) Because he can. This has been a deliciously busy year for our guy. Taking a star turn in the Steve McQueen biopic would be the perfect project with which Damian Lewis can start 2016.


We aren’t the first to note the similarities. Damian Lewis has himself acknowledged that special something:  “I guess I’m just good at playing repressed individuals. I’m lucky because those are often the roles that catch people’s eyes. It’s the Steve McQueen element, all that bubbling energy bottled up inside. It’s a very compelling quality on the screen. I’ve been lucky that I seem to be able to pull it off.”

Out of context, this sounds like a brag. It may be, but, darn if it ain’t the truth. Damian Lewis knows himself. He doesn’t have an “oh shucks” attitude about where he’s landed. Sure, a lot of success is sheer luck and being at the right place at the right time, but Damian Lewis seems like a bloke who has the self-knowledge and insight to know what kind of roles he is drawn to and made to play.

Ergo, let the evidence show, the role of Steve McQueen is one that Damian Lewis is made to play.

7 thoughts on “Why Damian Lewis should play Steve McQueen”

  1. it is obvious that Damian has a physical, near McQueen, and he has the same talent!
    So why look for another actor !!
    Loved Steeve and it would be great to see, Damian play his character!
    I’m sure that, if this is done, it will be a great success,for the film, and one more success for Damian!

    1. Thank you, Monique! I completely agree and JaniaJania makes an amazingly compelling case for Damian!

    2. Uncanny, isn’t it? DL would make a BEAUTIFUL McQueen in looks and in his ability to channel any good script perfectly. The biopic will be off of a book about McQueen’s later years, so age-wise, DL is perfect too. The book is _Steve McQueen: The Life And Legend Of A Hollywood Icon_ written by Marshall Terrill. On my reading list!!

  2. Shit, if he doesn’t he is doing a disservice to himself and the movie loving public. He’s not getting younger and he is at the right age to pull off all the phases of his life. It must be fun if you are able to pull it off. Only thing I wonder is that some might think it is like a Superman curse, tragic actor dies young etc. But James Franco is still with us,….. or is he??!

  3. Just not Damian Lewis! Maybe James Franco, even more so Ryan Gosling. But not Lewis. Every time I saw him in a movie, he was never credible to me, I always saw different private emotions in his eyes, as if playing at the same time saying to the viewers: “I’m good, aren’t I? But this role is nothing, I’m better than what I play now “, he should have more humbleness and focus, he does not have the stability and toughness that McQueen gave so wonderfully. When Lewis is to play emotions, he plays like a schoolboy, making faces as if he was passing his acting debut exam. In addition, he is red (with all the beauty features of redheads that make makeup difficult), he has a too long face and nose like Pinocchio, even other ears …
    I opt for Ryan Gosling. James Franco would rather say to play Paul Newman …

    1. Well, you may opt for Ryan Gosling but it is Damian Lewis who gets to play Steve McQueen in Tarantino’s latest. We have been rooting for him to play Steve McQueen for years and we are thrilled Quentin Tarantino has seen what we saw all along. We, the group of people who blog here, think Damian Lewis is the best actor of our generation. So while he may not be credible to you, he is more credible than all other actors to us.

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