Hulu’s Little Fires Everywhere breakout star Lexi Underwood has officially been announced to play Malia Obama in Showtime’s anthology series The First Lady, as reported by Deadline. Created and executive produced by Aaron Cooley, The First Lady will star Viola Davis as Michelle Obama, Michelle Pfeiffer as Betty Ford and Gillian Anderson as Eleanor Roosevelt as it details the world of American politics from inside the White House and through the lens of the women at the nucleus of it all.
Opposite Underwood will be O-T Fagbenle as former President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama will be played by Davis, who will be serving as an executive producer for the Susanne Bier directed series. Other confirmed cast members include Aaron Eckhart, Rhys Wakefield, Judy Greer, Kristine Froseth, and Jayme Lawson who will be portraying a young Michelle Obama. The Alienist actress Dakota Fanning has also been casted in The First Lady to play Susan Ford, the only daughter and youngest child of President Gerald Ford and Betty Ford.
Underwood gained attention for her acting skills after her role as Mia in Little Fires Everywhere starring Kerry Washington and Reese Witherspoon, which earned her an NAACP Image Award nomination for outstanding performance by a youth in a series, special, television movie or limited series. Underwood made her Broadway debut as Young Nala in The Lion King at the age of 11 and has since been in notable TV series including Criminal Minds, The Good Doctor and Raven’s Home.
She can also be seen starring as Kira in the Disney+ hip-hop Cinderella-inspired musical, Sneakerella. In this project, which has an unannounced release date, Underwood will have young Black Hollywood newcomer Chosen and NBA star and actor John Salley as castmates.