Forest Whitaker is currently playing Cecil Gaines, the butler to eight U.S. Presidents over the span of three decades in the film The Butler. Whitaker enlisted Jean-Louis’ help in order to map out the aging process of this character in a believable way. Jean-Louis has gained a reputation in the industry as an expert in physicalizing iconic political figures, and in coaching actors with the aging process for characters.
Last year, Leonardo DiCaprio worked extensively with Jean-Louis for his award winning performance as J. Edgar Hoover. Details of the psychological, physical, and emotional journey of J. Edgar Hoover had to be discovered and integrated from within. In J. Edgar, DiCaprio ages from his twenties to his seventies, a daunting challenge for a thirty seven year old actor. The result was a stunning interpretation of the historical figure that garnered DiCaprio worldwide recognition for his acclaimed performance.
Josh Brolin also worked with Jean-Louis in preparation for his role as George W. Bush in W. He came to Jean-Louis to work on expressing Bush’s aging process from the age of twenty to sixty. Besides integrating all the character physicality, Josh had to find a way of mapping the aging process within George W.’s particular life’s history. By using Jean-Louis’s coaching, Josh was able to discover and employ authentic human resources in his body and breath to give life to George W. Bush in stunning detail.