Steven Spielberg has revealed that Lincoln was almost created as a television series before it eventually got funding from a movie studio.
The biopic stars Daniel Day-Lewis as Abraham Lincoln and tells the story of how the former President of the United States played a major role in the American Civil War and the abolition of slavery.
He won an Academy Award for Best Actor for his portrayal.
However, things could have been very different if Spielberg was forced into making his vision into a series for HBO.
“I was willing to do Lincoln as a six-hour because I couldn’t raise all the financing for it,” Spielberg said on the Smartless podcast.
"No one believed in it…I went around town and everyone turned me down. I was ready to make a deal with HBO to do it and expand it to six hours. Tony Kushner’s first draft was 550 pages, so I had the goods! I had the material. I don’t know if I could have talked Daniel Day-Lewis into doing six hours, but I was on the brink of that.”
Spielberg will work in TV again
Like most acclaimed directors in Hollywood, Spielberg had to pay his dues in television before making his way to film work. In his early career, he directed episodes of TV, while he has been executive producer of such acclaimed projects like Band of Brothers.
He says he plans on returning to TV in a huge way with a "long-form" series.
And, he admits he would have liked to have directed Mare of Easttown, the thriller series starring Kate Winslet.
“I do have an appetite for long-form, and someday, I will direct a long-form series,” Spielberg explained.
“I mean, if someone would have brought me ‘Mare of Easttown,’ I would have done that. That was a beautifully directed story.”