This film really does have a really impressive supporting cast, but during that casting process was there ever any concern about bringing all these big names together and having it distract from A) the story, and B) the titular character?

Steven Spielberg: I think that the people who are in the story, the actors who are in the story, some of them with long filmographies and very well known to the American public, disappear into their characters within seconds of coming on the screen. By the time this film is five, six minutes in they’re all anonymous and they’re all their characters. And that’s the great thing about hiring talented actors. Their job is to convince you of who they are, and that’s what I’m so proud of with this cast.

Daniel Day-Lewis: Just thinking -- sorry, I’m just thinking back on the [previous] question. I’m sorry to interrupt you, but…I mean I’m just sort of reflecting a little bit on my entire life, and I’m thinking that I’ve spent a certain amount of time in 17th Century America, quite a bit of time in 18th Century America, and so much time in 19th Century America that I don’t know if I’ll ever get out to join the modern world [laughs]. So something’s been going on during these years, so they may not count on your list, but my experience is been that historical movies actually are well-presented.

Steven Spielberg: Yeah, that’s true. That’s true. I never realized that.

Mr. Spielberg, in deconstructing Lincoln’s image and icon you had to show him doing certain sort of questionable things in order to get slavery abolished. Do you feel that there is a message in that, and if so how would we apply that outside of a historical context?

Steven Spielberg: No, just desperate times require desperate measures. What Lincoln and the Lobbyist for the Amendment and the Manager of the Amendment and himself, what they did to get this passed was not illegal. It was murky, but what they did was noble and grand. How they went about it was somewhat murky, but nothing they did was really illegal. And by the way, what they did to gain favor, to persuade people to vote - not to vote their conscious – is not uncommon in this day and age either. To make a movie about a squeaky clean person who’s moral principles hold him so far beyond mortal man and woman would not be interesting to me. I like the fact that there is a bit of murkiness in the politics of the 19th Century to do something that was necessary and long-lasting.

Mr. Spielberg, I’m wondering – and I’m not sure if this goes into for lack of a better word, “spoiler territory,” because of the presentation – but as we approach the end of the film I realize I didn’t want to see the assassination and I didn’t want to give the assassins the time of day, but I’m wondering about you making the decision not to depict John Wilkes Booth or the three part assassination attempt at all.

Steven Spielberg: The decision I think was an easy one to make, because I think had we taken it right up to the assassination. I think the film would've for the first time become exploitation, and I didn’t want to go anywhere near that. That’s a very scary word, especially when you’re dealing with the history, and I think that nothing could be gained by showing that, and it was more profound for me to see what actually happened.

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