Renee Zellweger: Truly Judy
One of the best and most underrated actresses of her generation is set for the role of a lifetime playing screen legend Judy Garland.
It’s easy to underestimate Renee Zellweger – she with the disarming cotton-candy voice; the funny girl who almost always wins you over. Best known to audiences for playing the lovably clueless Bridget Jones, or the girl Tom Cruise picked as his love interest in Jerry Maguire, it’s also easy to forget Zellweger is a three-time Oscar nominee who took home the Academy Award for a supporting role in Cold Mountain (2003).
After taking a six-year hiatus entering her 40s, the actress who first made her name as a scream queen (opposite Matthew McConaughey, no less) made a triumphant return with her third and arguably most welcome turn as Jones in 2016.
Her next major acting (and singing) role sees her transforming almost unrecognisably into a late-career Judy Garland for a biopic based on the West End and Broadway play End of the Rainbow.The tragic life of Garland, a grand dame and former child star whose on-screen success came at a heavy price, has Oscar buzz building up again for Zellweger.
In the role of a lifetime, she can make a lasting impression as more than just a funny girl.
Jonesing For More
6 – The number of years Zellweger took a break from acting, between 2010 and 2016
>US$750 million – The global box office takings of the three Bridget Jones movies she was in
20 – The number of pounds (around 9kg) she had to gain in order to play the plump Jones
1993 – The year in which she appeared in her first (uncredited) role, in Richard Linklater’s Dazed and Confused
Stars: Renee Zellweger, Finn Wittrock, Rufus Sewell
In the late 1960s, with her star waning, legendary entertainer Judy Garland (Zellweger) of The Wizard of Oz fame is hired for a lucrative five-week singing engagement at a London nightclub. Unlucky in love, financially insecure and abusing drugs she had been dependent upon since her days as a Hollywood child star, Garland is romanced by a nightclub manager (Wittrock) while she struggles to keep her life from spiralling downwards.