First glimpse of Renée Zellweger in new Judy Garland film leaves fans in a spin – but not everyone’s happy.
No sooner has the buzz around Bohemian Rhapsody subsided than a new biopic has music fans talking. This time it’s Judy, a film detailing the life of Hollywood icon Judy Garland, that is generating interest.
The movie will be released in the Autumn, but the producers have just released a short trailer to give fans a taste of what’s in store.
In the one-minute clip we see and hear for the first time Zellweger as Garland (her rendition of Somewhere Over The Rainbow sounds pretty good to us).
An adaption of the musical End of the Rainbow, the film covers Garland’s life story but focuses particularly on a five-week period at the end of the star’s career.
It recreates Garland’s sold-out run at the Talk of the Town in London in 1968, revealing a character who is feisty and all conquering on stage and vulnerable and beleaguered off it.
A prodigiously talented actress and singer, Garland was plagued by insecurities brought about by her childhood (she was manipulated and exploited by pretty much all the adults around her).
Pushed into performing by her mother, who also drugged her daughter to give her the energy the meet her strict work schedule, Garland was also bullied ruthlessly by studio execs about her looks and weight. (Louis B Mayer thoughtfully called her “my little hunchback”).
Set 30 years after Garland starred as Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, and just a year before her death, the new film explores the life of a star battling personal demons, financial woes and drug addiction but still determined to find love.
Even though Judy won’t hit our screens until later this year, expect to hear a lot more about it in the coming months.
The film’s publicity machine is stepping into overdrive and has already generated lots of discussion, not all of it positive – Garland’s daughter Liza Minnelli has icily distanced herself from it.
“I do not approve or sanction the upcoming film about Judy Garland in any way,” Minnelli says.