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Brolin's Take On Playing The President

It's not easy for an actor to take on the role of a president, especially while the president is still in office.

However, actor Josh Brolin who starred in last year's Academy Award-winning movie, "No Country for Old Men," was up for the challenge.

In Oliver Stone's new movie "W." Brolin plays the 43rd president of the United States, George W. Bush.

When Stone sought out Brolin for the role, Brolin's immediate reaction was "no."

"Because I had my preconceptions. I pigeon-holed Bush as a bumbling idiot as I think many people have, going from a 90 percent approval rating to a 23 percent approval rating. It just was a very cosmetic reaction," Brolin told Early Show co-anchor Harry Smith.

Once Oscar-winning director and screenwriter Stone came to him with the "W" script, Brolin finally sat down and read it from beginning to end while vacationing with his family.

"I learned that it was much more of a character study than a political smashing, which it's not," he explained.

Considering everyone in the world knows who George W. Bush is and has watched him endlessly, it's a difficult undertaking to capture the portrayal.

"You springboard from massive amounts of fear and wanting to live up to it. I did a lot of research. I read a lot of books. The movie is really no different than any biography. I think there are probably 13 or 14 biographies out on Bush and it's always tainted by the biographer. This is basically our rendition of his life zone, so to speak."

Politics aside, Brolin now has a different outlook on Mr. Bush's personal traits.

"We can see him on CNN everyday. We already know what he is, we know the exaggerations of his gestures, the problems he has in public speaking, but then you get into his life and you start to appreciate some personal traits of his. He dealt with his drinking at 40 years old, he turned it around and turned his whole life around, he had been floundering before that," Brolin said.

Ultimately, making this film has changed Brolin's internal response to him as well.

"Emotionally, intellectually -- much more emotionally then intellectually -- just dealing with his persona. He has done some things in the administration that has been amazing. There are more minorities in his administration than any administration in history, but he is the war president. That's how he's come to be known because that's how he wants to be known. He is the one that put that out there," Brolin said.

Brolin's portrayal has already generated Oscar buzz.

"I was glad I was able to play a character that is resonating for this year," Brolin said.