The former Designated Survivor star will again play the president of the United States, starring opposite Gillian Anderson, who plays First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, in the anthology series that reframes American leadership through the lens of the women at the heart of the White House. The First Lady's first season will also tackle the presidencies of Barack Obama and Gerald Ford, with Viola Davis as Michelle Obama and OT Fagbenle as President Obama. Aaron Eckhart plays President Gerald Ford alongside Michelle Pfeiffer as Betty Ford and Dakota Fanning as daughter Susan Ford. From 2016 through 2019, Sutherland starred in the ABC/Netflix political thriller Designated Survivor, playing the U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development who is suddenly thrust into the presidency. The First Lady is Sutherland's latest series for ViacomCBS after signing on to star in a Paramount+ espionage drama in May. Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who led the United States through the Great Depression and World War II, was recently ranked in a C-SPAN survey of historians as the third-greatest president in U.S. history, behind George Washington and Abraham Lincoln.