Here’s a first look at Renée Zellweger as ‘Miss Show Business’ Judy Garland in new biopic Judy, which is now underway in the UK. And it’s a pretty good likeness, I’d say.
The Pathé, BBC Films and Ingenious Media-backed movie will chart the story of Hollywood icon Garland’s final concerts in London. Bridget Jones star Zellweger plays Garland alongside Jessie Buckley (War And Peace), Finn Wittrock (American Horror Story), Michael Gambon (Harry Potter), Rufus Sewell (The Man In The High Castle) and Bella Ramsey (Game Of Thrones).
Set in winter 1968, the story takes place 30 years after Garland played the iconic role of Dorothy in The Wizard Of Oz. When she arrives in Swinging London to prepare for a sell-out run at The Talk of the Town, she battles with management, charms musicians and reminisces with friends and adoring fans. Even her dreams of romance seem undimmed as she embarks on a courtship with Mickey Deans, her soon to be fifth husband. And yet Garland is fragile. After working for 45 of her 47 years, she is exhausted; haunted by memories of a childhood lost to Hollywood and gripped by a desire to be back home with her kids. The film will feature some of Garland’s best-known songs, including Over The Rainbow. Zellweger notably showed off her singing ability in 2002 musical Chicago, for which she was nominated for a Best Actress Oscar.
The film is directed by two-time Olivier winner Rupert Goold (King Charles III) and is based on a script by Tom Edge (The Crown). Producer is David Livingstone (Pride) for Calamity Films. Goold’s creative team includes Director of Photography Ole Bratt Birkeland (The Crown), Musical Director Matt Dunkley (Black Swan), Editor Melanie Oliver (Les Miserables), Costume Designer Jany Temime (Harry Potter), Make Up and Hair Designer Jeremy Woodhead (Doctor Strange) and Production Designer Kave Quinn (Far From The Madding Crowd).
Executive Producers are Cameron McCracken for Pathé, Rose Garnett for BBC Films and Andrea Scarso for Ingenious. Laurence Myers, Lee Dean, Aaron Levene, Charles Diamond, Ellis Goodman and Hilary Williams will also get executive producer credits. Pathé will distribute the film in UK, France and Switzerland and handles sales in the rest of the world.