Turns out even Renée Zellweger is as hooked on true crime as the rest of us right now.
After bingeing the podcast The Thing About PamZellweger wanted to bring the story to the small screen, but her research really took her down the rabbit hole to find the truth about Pam Hupp.
During an interview with 9Entertainment, she revealed she uncovered a lot although she’s ‘legally forbidden’ from talking about it.
She explained it’s not a “spoiler kind of thing”, rather legal implications from the case still being before the courts.
“This has been such an interesting experience for me because I’m not allowed to talk about the things that I found most shocking or fascinating or the conclusions I drew, or you know, speculation on my part because I’m legally forbidden,” she said.
“And I wouldn’t want to, because we’re talking about somebody’s life here.
“But yes there were things, and maybe one day it’ll be a public record and we can talk about it again.”
The Thing About Pam is based on the life of Pam Hupp, a middle-aged Missouri woman involved in various murder cases beginning with the death of her close friend, Betsy Faria.
The story is bizarre and the deeper it goes, the stranger it gets, so it’s no surprise a podcast was made about the quirky case.
Zellweger was sent the podcast of the same name by Big Picture Co. partner Carmella Casinelli.
“She said, ‘You have to listen to this because I think there’s something here that needs exploring,’ and she was right, I was fascinated,” the 53-year-old explained.
“Not just because of the peculiarity of the story, with the how, with the series of escalating absurdities, it just makes you question how it’s possible.
“I think in the big picture this case speaks to a lot of socially relevant, important topics that we’re grappling with in American society right now.”
Pam Hupp is quite the personality. She’s charismatic, she’s manipulative and has little quirks that make the story even more intriguing.
Transforming into Hupp was a process for Zellweger, and she went deep with research into finding out who she really was.
“It didn’t feel so much like a role, more an examination,” the Oscar winner said.
“It was something that I was just curious about and wanted to better understand, as a storyteller. So I just started digging around the materials around the public record, her testimonies, the interviews she’d given both with the police and to media , whatever it is that she put out there herself in the narrative, and then the facts surrounding the case. “
Zellweger said she felt like she was “hoarding” the information about Hupp until she felt like she was immersed in it, and then they were ready to go with the production.
The role was less about becoming a character, but taking on who Hupp was and becoming that.
“She’s a very charismatic person, and she has a great personality and people describe her as vivacious and funny and very alluring,” she explained.
“Most of the things for me, it was just a habit of being around the information and being immersed in the information, collecting it every day. I had headphones on every day listening to her inflection and how she expresses herself and watching different mannerisms until they become innate. “
Zellweger takes on the role of executive producer in the limited series, which is just six episodes.
While the case is still before the courts, it meant there was no real ending for The Thing About Pam.
When asked, “How do you tie the story up in a bow?” when there really is no ending, Zellweger shrugged. “You don’t,” she said.
“It’s sort of dynamic, it’s a dynamic case, it’s ongoing and we can only take you up to the present and what we know,” she said.
“So I don’t think we were necessarily looking for a way to tie it up, but to present it as this open-ended, unsolved mystery.”