Filmed in Virginia


Walk in the footsteps of the cast and crew of Steven Spielberg's masterpiece, Lincoln, filmed over 53 days in Virginia. Visit the filiming sites and places visited by cast and crew.


Virginia as a Film Location

"I think Lincoln couldn't have been happier at the idea that a movie about him has been so warmly embraced by the city of Richmond. It's also perfect physically - it's really got that look of old America in it. The Capitol is able to give that certain feeling of intimacy that a congressional debate can have." - Doris Kearns Goodwin, author of "Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln"

"There was something very profound about filming the passing of the 13th Amendment in the state capital of Richmond, Virginia. It was overwhelming in the best way possible." - Gloria Reuben, actress portraying Elizabeth Keckley

"It really made sense to make the movie here. There are battlefields, there's the State House, which from certain angles is amazingly reminsicent of the White House, there are mansions in Petersburg still very much the way they were then ..." - Rick Carter, production designer

Lincoln Window Cling

"History is alive in Richmond in a way you don't find it in the rest of the country. It's also a very resonant city, because Richmond represented the aristocratic version of America in the middle of the 1800s. It was at the heart of the culture clash that erupted into the Civil War. And, in a way, it's a place that has been defined by Lincoln more than any other. Springfield, Illinois, is where Lincoln was born, but Richmond is where he changed the nation and made it whole." - Rick Carter, production designer

Quotes from LINCOLN

  • "Abolishing slavery settles the fate for millions now in bondage and unborn millions to come." - Abraham Lincoln (Daniel Day-Lewis)
  • "No one's loved as much as you by the people. Don't waste that power." - Mary Todd Lincoln (Sally Field) to Abraham Lincoln
  • "We must cure ourselves of slavery. The Amendment is that cure." - Abraham Lincoln
  • "It's either the Amendment or this Confederate peace. You cannot have both." - William Henry Seward (David Strathairn)
  • "I am the President of the United States of America, clothed in immense power." - Abraham Lincoln
  • "We can't tell our people they can vote yes on abolishing slavery unless at the same time we could tell them you're seeking a negotiated peace." - Francis Preston Blair (Hal Holbrook)
  • "If you fail to acquire the necessary votes, woe unto you, sir, you will answer to me." - Mary Todd Lincoln to Abraham Lincoln


Quotes from the Producer, Cast and Crew

  • "We came to focus on the last four months to Lincoln's life because what he accomplished in that time was truly monumental. However, we wanted to show that he himself was a man, not a monument. We felt our best hope of doing justice to this immensely complicated person was to depict him in the midst of his most complex fight: to pass the 13th Amendment on the floor of the House of Representatives." - Steven Spielberg, producer
  • "This isn't just some patriotic biography ... this is a story about a human being." - Joseph Gordon-Levitt, actor portraying Robert Lincoln
  • "... in this day and age when so many people have lost faith in the idea of governance, it's a story that shows that you can achieve miraculous, beautiful things through the democratic system." - Tony Kushner, screenwriter
  • "To have a window into Lincoln's soul at this time in history is extraordinary. I think Steven [Spielberg] and Tony [Kushner] reveal the nerve and spine of Lincoln - and you get to see the complex collision of great personality with great purpose. You also see the cost to Lincoln, the dark night he has to traverse, wondering if the ends justify the means." - David Strathairn, actor portraying William H. Seward


Journalist Mark Harris interviewed Steven Spielberg and Daniel Day-Lewis in October 2012. It was the first in-depth interview the two conducted regarding the filming of LINCOLN. These are but a few take-aways.

  • When asked how he approached the idea of portraying Lincoln, Daniel Day-Lewis replied, "I fled ... I didn't honestly feel that I was capable of doing that work."
  • Harris asked Steven Spielberg if he finds fear useful, to which Spielberg replied, "The work that I'm proudest of is the work I'm most afraid of."

See the interview in its entirety.


Wardrobe Exhibit at Center Hill Mansion

Lincoln Movie Tours

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