Sally Field will play Abraham Lincoln's wife Mary Todd in an upcoming biopic about the former American president.

'Lincoln' will be directed by Hollywood heavyweight Steven Spielberg, who said he was delighted to be working with the former 'Brothers and Sisters' actress.

He told Entertainment Weekly: "I'm excited to be working with Sally for the first time. I've admired her films, and she has always been my first choice to portray all the fragility and complexity that was Mary Todd Lincoln."

The role of Mary will be a weighty one, as in addition to suffering the assassination of her husband, she lost two of their four sons in childhood and another when he was 18.

According to some historians, she struggled with depression and was prone to breakdowns and public outbursts.

Sally - who will be starring opposite Daniel Day-Lewis, playing Abraham - said: "To have the opportunity to work with Steven Spielberg and Daniel Day-Lewis and to play one of the most complicated and colourful women in American history is simply As Good As It Gets."