Renee Zellweger

Renée Zellweger Goes Over the Rainbow, and Into the Oscar Spotlight in ‘Judy'

Renée Zellweger is getting a lot of Oscar buzz for her role in "Judy."

What to Know

  • Judy Garland died of an accidental drug overdose in 1969.
  • "Judy" was directed by Rupert Goold.
  • "Judy" opens nationwide Sept. 27th.

Hollywood icon Judy Garland died of an accidental drug overdose in 1969 when she was only 47. In "Judy", filmmakers tackle the tough final year before her death while she was in residence at the Talk of the Town nightclub in London.

Renée Zellweger gives a performance that can only be described as a love letter to Garland. You will feel every note, tear, pill, and laugh as it passed through her body. The "Bridget Jones Diary" star says she spent a lot of time researching Garland's songs and mannerisms, and played around with various sounds, and movements with the help of director Rupert Goold until she found just the right tone.

Many critics are already claiming a spot in the Oscar pool for Zellweger calling it "one of the best performances of the year."

The film oscillates between Garland's early days when she was discovered by Louis B. Mayer of MGM and the final months of her life when she was broke and in poor health. As a young girl, Mayer dangles the golden ticket to stardom in front of Garland at a high personal price that leads to a long life of addiction and an eating disorder. Zellweger as Garland is so thin at some points you can feel the life withering away from her body.

Despite the Oscar buzz, Zellweger remains as humble and kind as you'd expect from a Texas girl. She says performing Garland's musical numbers like "The Trolley Song" and "Over the Rainbow" were her favorites. The latter, she says. was like closing the page on a love letter to Judy.

Audiences will have a chance to see this Oscar-worthy performance for themselves when "Judy" opens nationwide on September 27th.

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