President Lincoln is so deeply ingrained in our national consciousness that his image can be found practically everywhere (not least on those ubiquitous American pennies). He is the most frequently portrayed American historical figure in the history of the film and television arts, having been featured in well over 150 productions since the birth of the motion picture medium. He has delivered the Gettysburg Address, and on one occasion solemnly urged the title teenagers of Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure (1989) to "party on, dudes." Lincoln has been portrayed by such diverse actors as Raymond Massey, Walter Huston, Gregory Peck, Jason Robards, Hal Holbrook, and Henry Fonda.
The author provides a brief overview of the history of Lincoln film and television portrayals, including documentaries. Then, each Lincoln-related work has an individual entry detailing essential cast, production and release information, as well as a discussion of each work's historical accuracy and artistic merits. The book is fully illustrated with photographs of Lincoln portrayers, dating from the earliest days.