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« Fosse/Verdon - Ep.5: "Where Am I Going?"| Main| Nominations for the 61st Arieles Are Announced »
Friday
May 10 2019

Renee Zellweger Sings as Judy Garland

byMurtada Elfadl

The buzz is building fast and loud for Renee Zellweger's performace as Judy Garland inJudy.All we needed was to check the voice.Will she sing or will she lip sync a la Rami Malek?Well without further ado check it out.

This is not an exacting impersonation per se from Renee but rather an interpretation.It's just a few notes from one song...

However it is Garland's signature song "Over the Rainbow"and you can still hear the trembling,the heartbreak,the emotion and Garland herself in that short clip.

The film is based on Peter Quilter's playEnd of the Rainbow,adapted for the screen by Tom Edge ( who wrote a few episodes ofThe Crown) and directed by Rupert Goold(True Story,The Hollow Crownand the current Broadway productionInk).The play was staged in London and Broadway with Tracie Bennett as Judy in a Tony nominated performance.The story takes place in 1968 as Judy arrives in London for her sold-out run at the nightclub Talk of the Town.As she prepares for the show,we see her interact with her fifth husband Mickey Deans (Finn Wittrock),her manager (Michael Gambon),her ex Sid Luft (Rufus Sewell) and her children (Game of Thrones'Bella Ramsay plays Lorna Luft).It's not a cradle to grave bio-pic but rather just five weeks in Garland's life 30 years after she became a star so we are definately getting her battles with addiction and her struggle to become relevant at the end of her career.

I've seen the Broadway show and it was thrilling and heartbreaking and had Bennett singing all of Garland's famous songs.It's a performance driven story and based on what Zellweger is giving us here there's reason to be excited.And some have already seen the film and are hyping Zellweger's performance.I leave you with the Daily Mail's Baz Bamigboye:

Instead of a Yes,No,Maybe So tell how excited are you on scale on one to ten?

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Reader Comments (58)

I know Renee isn't popular around these parts but when she was great,she was truly something.

I'm at an 8,only because I don't want to get my hopes up.But man...a comeback nod would be so awesome.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterAndy

This trailer gives me a bit of hope,but it seems Wikipedish but i'm all for a Renee comeback.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered Commentermarkgordonuk

I couldn't be more excited.

Hoping the film is as exquisite as this trailer.

Renee is a star.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterKeegan

10 PLUS!
Renee would never attempt it if she didn't know she could pull it off....

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterDO

I don't think anyone here doubts Z is a good actress.We've seen many examples.But it's also evident she can give a bad performance,again,many examples.If she is great here no one will be shocked.If she isn't,no one will be shocked.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterSawyer

As an inveterate Garland fan for more years than I would care to say...this project excites me.I have liked Renee in Chicago and hope this is a very good movie.I am enthused about it.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered Commenterrdf

A Renee-saince is due!She's spent enough time in purgatory.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterRaul

I hope Anne Hathaway fires her agent.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

When Zellwegger is good,she's very good.And that happens far more often than not.I hope we see her throughout awards season and that this makes an impact.

However,I suspect we'll see a lot of male film critics and bloggers (including gay ones),attempt to write this off,or if that proves hard attack the quality of her film rather than her performance.Whenever a female star over 50 makes a return,they basically take out knives.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterJoe

I for one have never given up on Renee so I'm excited/scare by this.I'd give it an 8,meaning I'll watch it no matter what,but if it gets raves,I'll pay bucks to see it in the theater.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterDave in Hollywood

@PeggySue

Why?Nathaniel said Hathaway should be doing Liza not Judy.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered Commenter/3rtful

I'll believe in a Rene Z come back when she's hired by a megawatt auteur.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered Commenter/3rtful

This beautiful trailer is a slap in the face of society.Come back Renee,we love you!

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterFeline Justice

@3rtful

I recall an announcement years ago that Hathaway would play Garland both on stage and film.Obviously that fell apart.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterA.Henry

The art direction looks impeccable.I love the color saturation here rather than the overlit,flat look some biopics seem to aim for.I'd say 7 & 1/2.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterDave S.

If this movie is generically good - like My Week With Marilyn,for example - and the reviews good,nothing extraordinary,I believe a nomination is guaranteed.Gosh,it's gonna start all over again!The long walk to Glenn's nomination and now Renee(at least she already has her Oscar).You can't escape.And in the Globes,comedy/musical or drama?

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterDoodie

As much as I'm tired of biopics -- and as much as I hated her Oscar win forCold Mountain-- now that I've seen the trailer,I'm rooting for Renee.Bonus points for the film's not being a cradle-to-grave photo album of her life.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterTroy H.

This looks like utter trash.Judy deserves better.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered Commenteroscarsights亚博主页

Mimicry.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered Commenterbrandz

They should make more movies narrating moments,phases in life,as in the case here,instead of trying to tell a whole life in a two-and-a-half-hour,three-hour movie - especially when it comes to figures like Judy Garland,with lives so rich in events that more closely resemble a soap opera.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterSamuel

"Whenever a female star over 50 makes a return,they basically take out knives."

They haven't taken out their knives for Woodard,and Julianne Moore got plenty of good reviews for Gloria Bell.But if Renee gets a nomination for this over some of the talent on the horizon (Erivo,Woodard,McDormand,Ronan,Portman,Mirren,Adams,Awkwafina,Theron,Lupita),most people won't be happy.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterSuzanne

Comeback??Bridget Jones Baby was just a couple of years ago and it made over $200 Million worldwide.She works continuously.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterCris

Oh man this is a tough one for me.I'm actually a fan of Zellweger but,my God,Judy Garland was a remarkable presence and a truly unique and gifted,larger than life,superstar - one of the very top of them all and...well...this trailer looks very respectful,very artistic,very "good"but,I'm sorry - nothing here feels great to me.It looks like a very fine performance in a very well made film which - as brandz wrote above - mimics Garland but cannot capture her.Maybe the actual film experience will sweep me up more and I'll be convinced but,right now,I don't "feel"it even though I certainly respect it.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered Commenterbillybil

Oh man this is a tough one for me.I'm actually a fan of Zellweger but,my God,Judy Garland was a remarkable presence and a truly unique and gifted,larger than life,superstar - one of the very top of them all and...well...this trailer looks very respectful,very artistic,very "good"but,I'm sorry - nothing here feels great to me.It looks like a very fine performance in a very well made film which - as brandz wrote above - mimics Garland but cannot capture her.Maybe the actual film experience will sweep me up more and I'll be convinced but,right now,I don't "feel"it even though I certainly respect it.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered Commenterbillybil

The trailer looks great.Really excited for this!Welcome back Renee!

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterMichael R

Looks like it could be good.I'm keeping an open mind.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterDan H

I've already began racing myself for the snarky reactions,but I'm optimistic about this one.I also think it's a bold and smart choice for Renee to do her own singing,since she's playing Judy in her decline the expectations shouldn't be as high.I'm also a sucker for these types of movies.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered Commenterthefilmjunkie

Baz is usually a good barometer were female performances are concerned.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered Commentermarkgordonuk

I'm not crazy about the trend of naming biopics after the subject's first or last name--it feels lazy and generic.'End of the Rainbow' would have been a much more intriguing title than 'Judy,' but I'm interested.

Renee Zellweger's casting is pretty inspired,and she looks good in these clips.I would rather see her take on the role than the previously suggested Anne Hathaway,who I just think is too limited a performer with too much persona-related baggage to do the part justice.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterMike

I'm definitely interested.I'd love to see Renee respected again with a new nomination.

However,this singing is no where near Judy's talent.I like the mimicry in the voice,but it never gains any real gusto.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterPhilip H.

https://youtu.be/GirOMCxZSm4

Minute 3:35 --4:00

"I've hung on..to every bit of rubbish ..there is to hang on to in life....and I've thrown all the goods bits away..."

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterDan

OMG!I love it!
So thrill for Renée...

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterDoug

I'm a 9.I loved the stageshow and hope that energy and focused storytelling will translate well to the screen.Renee sounds better in her lower range than I expected and the halting quality when she starts to bottom out is true to style.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterRobert G

That's a glossy looking Garland for the last weeks of her life....more like '63 TV show Judy.Which is very telling in how they will tell this story...

May 10,2019 | Unregistered Commenterrick gould

I don't doubt her acting at all but the moment she sang as Judy..No.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterJack for Streep

LOL

There should be a Peggy Sue comment of the week

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterEric

I've watched this 32777 times today.Renee should win a second Oscar.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterSean Casey

Hoping for the best!Judy was a force and Renne looks asleep.It makes me think it's too bad Streep did not play older Joan Crawford in Feud.That genius casting would have complimented my earlier work beautifully.

May 10,2019 | Unregistered CommenterFaye

is mickey deans one of her gay husbands?'cause if finn wittrock is making out with dudes i'm at eight and a half...

May 11,2019 | Unregistered Commenterpar

YUP!Lets go Renee!!

May 11,2019 | Unregistered CommenterManuel

The voice is *not* right for Judy...Judy is basically the greatest singer of all time.I'm still skeptical.Don't want this iconic woman's reputation jeopardized with subpar singing.

May 11,2019 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

I hate it.It looks like Diane and Grace of Monaco bad.Awful.

May 11,2019 | Unregistered Commentercal roth

Diana,of course

May 11,2019 | Unregistered Commentercal roth

Five weeks in a lifetime (that lifetime at least) is good enough.Hope Renee hits it out of the park and gets industry support!

May 11,2019 | Unregistered CommenterTOM

Rene seems more Judy-ish than Annette Bening as Gloria Grahame was supposed to be.

May 11,2019 | Unregistered CommenterTOM

Aww,I enjoyed Bening in Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool.Gloria Grahame's later life and last days were a hell of a lot less known than Judy Garland's.Zellweger has that degree of difficulty to overcome,which I hope she does successfully.

May 11,2019 | Unregistered CommenterMareko

It's impossible to tell just from a short trailer--but my knee-jerk response is that I think the trailer is effective and she looks quite good in this.The fact that she herself is considered "washed up"by many and is playing Garland in her dark days makes for canny casting and might help sell this project differently than if it were Hathaway or someone else in the lead.It lends it a "Mickey Rourke in The Wrestler"kind of appeal (not that I think her career is as bad off as his was at that time).This definitely does not look like Grace of Monaco to me--I am one of the biggest Kidman fans going,but I consider that to be pretty much the worst thing she ever did,and it seemed like a horrible idea from the beginning.

Zellweger's rapid decline in popularity was so odd to me.She was on SUCH a roll--and then nothing she did after 2005 seemed to work out for her.She went from ambitious project to ambitious project ...to bad romantic comedies with Harry Connick Jr.And from a brief look at IMDB it looks like she took 6 years off?The bottom line is that we never really know what's going on with people.Maybe she just wasn't getting offered great roles,maybe she lost her passion for a while,maybe she's had struggles of one kind or another.We don't know.But I do think that she is a unique and gifted actress who has been flat-out wonderful in many projects.Off the top of my head,I thought she was fabulous in Nurse Betty,White Oleander,Chicago,Bridget Jones,Down with Love,and One True Thing.She was hammy in Cold Mountain,but I liked her well enough in it and I enjoy that movie and the performances in it a lot more than most people seem to.

Anyway,given that there are now so many more venues outside of movies for actors to find good work--Netflix shows,FX miniseries,etc--I would hope to see her find some quality work,if she wants it.I hope Judy does well,because frankly at the very least her performance will need to be well-received to put her back on the map.I'm rooting for her!

May 11,2019 | Unregistered CommenterJJM

Give it to me now.

May 11,2019 | Unregistered CommenterV.

I'm actually intrigued by the craft of it.This looks much more beautiful than I was expecting.I was thinking low-key like FILM STARS DON'T DIE IN LIVERPOOL,but this seems to have a bigger scope.Zellweger looks good but we don't see her really acting.What does she sound like when *talking* as Judy?That can often hinder a performance.Is it consistent and accurate?Singing is different.I'm here for more Renee,though.

May 11,2019 | Unregistered CommenterGlenn Dunks

Renée looks good,but I can't get over that vocal.It sounds weak.How can you do a Judy Garland biopic with a star who can't sing that well?

May 12,2019 | Unregistered CommenterEvan

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