Renee Zellweger is a frontrunner for the Best Actress Oscar for her role as Judy Garland in the biopic Judy. She’s already earned Golden Globe and SAG nominations. Viewers can see her extraordinary performance in Judy on digital now, and take her home on DVD and Blu-ray on December 24.
The Blu-ray includes a brief interview with Zellweger, director Rupert Goold and other cast and filmmakers. Zellweger revealed three reasons she wanted to tell Judy Garland’s story, plus the one scene that made her stomach flip, her words. Here’s a preview of Renee Zellweger on the Judy Blu-ray.
The first reason Renee Zellweger wanted to make ‘Judy’
Judy focuses on the last few months of Garland’s life as she mounts a comeback tour. Flashbacks show her harrowing life as a child actor on the set of The Wizard of Oz.
“There were a lot of reasons I wanted to make this picture,” Zellweger said. “To Look into the human side of this icon.”
Judy certainly shows the human side of Garland behind the scenes. She’s struggling with her ex-husband (Rufus Sewell) and trying to keep custody of her kids. Sometimes she’s struggling day to day and still gets stage fright when she goes out in public.
The second reason Renee Zellweger wanted to make ‘Judy’
The basic interest in Judy Garland was enough to get the film going. By focusing on Judy Garland’s comeback, the film can depict her rise and fall and rise again, to show why Judy Garland is still important decades after her death.
“There’s a reason why we’re telling her story 50 years after her passing,” Zellweger said. “That combination of spirit and beauty and humility and grace and empathy is so rare.”
The third reason Renee Zellweger wanted to make ‘Judy’
As Judy shows, the Hollywood of the 1940s was cruel and demanding to child actors. This affected Judy Garland throughout her life and contributed to her early death at age 47. All the joy Judy Garland brought to people came at a price to her. Renee Zellweger wanted the film to give her a little justice.
“This beautiful woman who deserved the world’s love,” Zellweger said. “She mattered so much to so many people and she touched the lives of so many people, we want to show her the love that she shared with all of us.”
The stomach flipping scene
It’s one thing to play Judy Garland. It’s quite another to sing Judy Garland’s legendary songs in her voice. And it’s yet another when one of those songs is ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow.’
“Yeah, my stomach just flipped when you even referenced it,” Zellweger said. “I’ve never done that before.”
Renee Zellweger nailed “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.” If her nominations aren’t enough proof of that, director Rupert Goold confirmed the scene made an impact behind the scenes too. When Garland performs the song in concert, the audience sings along with her. Goold said non-singing extras were moved too.
“If you look in the deep background you see people really crying,” Goold said.