Ellen Burstyn (Big Love, Requiem for a Dream) will join the cast of the upcoming six-part USA series Political Animals, the network announced Friday. The Oscar-winning actress joins previously announced cast members including Sigourney Weaver, Ciaran Hinds, and Carla Gugino in the Washington, D.C.-based drama.
Burstyn will play Margaret Barrish, the mother of the Secretary of State, who is played by Weaver. The secretary of state is a former First Lady who’s recently been divorced from her philandering husband. Burstyn’s Margaret is described as a “tough Chicago broad and onetime Vegas showgirl,” who is “the first one to whip open a bottle of booze to help her through a political evening.”
The show, from producers Greg Berlanti (Brothers & Sisters) and Laurence Mark (Jerry Maguire), also stars Weaver’s You Again costar James Wolk (Lone Star) as Weaver’s son, an ambitious politico who is also her chief of staff, and Brittany Ishibashi (Parenthood) as her son’s fiancée. Carla Gugino plays a journalist determined to destroy Weaver’s character’s career. The show is set to debut this summer.