In an interview with The Independent, Forest Whitaker said that he was once offered the chance to play Barack Obama in the 2010 film, “My Name is Kahn,” but turned down the opportunity.
“I was asked if I would play President Obama ’My Name is Khan,’” said Whitaker. “I didn’t feel comfortable with doing it. Partly because he was still in office, but mainly because I felt that there were other people who were better suited to doing the role.”
The film eventually hired actor Christopher B. Duncan for the role of Obama. Whitaker expressed to the publication that he would have liked Will Smith to have played the part( but of course, that wasn’t his choice). Duncan is widely known for his role as Clarence Wiedman on the television series “Veronic Mars.”
Despite the missed opportunity, a connection between Whitaker and Obama still exists. The actor starred in “Lee Daniels’ The Butler,” a film that President Obama said made him cry.
“I teared up thinking about not just the butlers who worked here in the White House, but an entire generation of people who were talented and skilled.