Michael Douglas Is Definitely ‘Up to Something’ as Benjamin Franklin in Apple TV+ ‘Franklin’ Trailer

Turns out, Benjamin Franklin didn’t just sit around perfecting bifocals.

Apple TV+ today released the trailer for its eight-part limited series “Franklin,” starring and executive produced by Michael Douglas. The first three episodes will premiere globally on the Apple SVOD service on Friday, April 12; the next five episodes will role out one at a time on subsequent Fridays through May 17.

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“Franklin” is based on Stacy Schiff’s book “A Great Improvisation: Franklin, France, and the Birth of America.” The series tells “the thrilling story of the greatest gamble of Benjamin Franklin’s career” — outside of holding a lightning rod in a thunderstorm, we imagine.

In 1776, the world-famous inventor faces his ultimate test: a secret mission to recruit France to help America fight for its independence in the Revolutionary War. And, oh yeah, he was 70 and Transatlantic travel hadn’t exactly been perfected.

“By virtue of his fame, charisma and ingenuity, Franklin outmaneuvered British spies, French informers and hostile colleagues to engineer the Franco-American alliance of 1778 and the peace treaty with Great Britain in 1783,” the Apple TV+ logline reads.

Franklin’s eight-year French mission is considered by historians to be the greatest single tour of duty by an ambassador in our nation’s history. So, no pressure, Michael Douglas.

“Franklin” also stars Noah Jupe (“A Quiet Place”) as Temple Franklin, Thibault de Montalembert (“Call My Agent!”) as Comte de Vergennes, Daniel Mays (“Line of Duty”) as Edward Bancroft, Ludivine Sagnier (“Lupin”) as Madame Brillon, Eddie Marsan (“Ray Donovan”) as John Adams, Assaad Bouab (“Call My Agent!”) as Beaumarchais, Jeanne Balibar (“Irma Vep”) as Madame Helvetius, and Theodore Pellerin (“There’s Someone Inside Your House”) as Marquis de Lafayette.

Kirk Ellis (“John Adams”) and Howard Korder (“Boardwalk Empire”) write and executive produce the limited series. Tim Van Patten (“The Sopranos”) directs and executive produces.

Richard Plepler, the former HBO CEO, executive produces through EDEN Productions. Tony Krantz executive produces through Flame Ventures, as does Philippe Maigret through ITV Studios America. In addition to Douglas, Mark Mostyn also executive produces; Author Schiff serves as co-executive producer. “Franklin” is a co-production between ITV Studios America and Apple Studios.

Watch the trailer below.

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