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The American President (1995)

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Comedy-drama about a widowed U.S. president and a lobbyist who fall in love. It's all above-board, but "politics is perception" and sparks fly anyway.



3,385 ( 542)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 9 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:


Andrew Shepherd is approaching the end of his first term as President of the United States. He's a widower with a young daughter and has proved to be popular with the public. His election seems assured. That is until he meets Sydney Ellen Wade, a paid political activist working for an environmental lobby group. He's immediately smitten with her and after several amusing attempts, they finally manage to go on a date (which happens to be a State dinner for the visiting President of France). His relationship with Wade opens the door for his prime political opponent, Senator Bob Rumson, to launch an attack on the President's character, something he could not do in the previous election as Shepherd's wife had only recently died. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Why can't the most powerful man in the world have the one thing he wants most?


Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:




Release Date:

17 November 1995 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Mi querido presidente  »

Box Office


$62,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£1,132,043 (UK) (15 December 1995)


$65,000,000 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| | |



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


During one of his many visits to the White House, director Rob Reiner spent two consecutive days with President Bill Clinton, following him around as he went through his day. See more »


While the US President can't introduce a bill in Congress, it's common practice for him to get a sympathetic legislator to do it for him; this could be colloquially referred to as the President introducing the bill. In any case, he says, accurately, that he's "sending a bill to Congress for its consideration" which is perfectly proper as part of the State of the Union message. See more »


President Andrew Shepherd: For the last couple of months, Senator Rumson has suggested that being president of this country was, to a certain extent, about character, and although I have not been willing to engage in his attacks on me, I've been here three years and three days, and I can tell you without hesitation: Being President of this country is entirely about character. For the record: yes, I am a card-carrying member of the ACLU. But the more important question is why aren't you, Bob? Now, this is an organization ...
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User Reviews

Better than apple pie
25 May 2000 | by (Oslo, Norway) – See all my reviews

This Reiner flick is a gem of the nineties. In its genre probably the best thing to hit the screens since Capra rounded them up over half a century ago.

The story itself is nothing extraordinary. Set in Washington it is a simple tale of love between lobbyist Sidney Wade and widow President Andrew Sheperd. Flung into love they both encounter obstacles as both opposition and political differences tear them apart. No need to worry though, all is well that ends well. And Reiner is not the one to slip one on us.

What makes this film shine above most are not the development of characters or the underdeveloped political statements. Its the achievement of giving audiences 90 minutes of pure bliss. Douglas is lovable as president, Beattys spouse makes you jealous as always, J. Fox never misses an opportunity to display huge talent and Dreyfuss is just the kind of guy you love to hate. Add a dose of victorious political correctness and top it of with a final speech that raises the hair on any kinds of neck but rednecks, and you got your evening made.

Enjoy !

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