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Candy stars Jessica Biel and Melanie Lynskey in a real-life suburban horror story

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By: Acústica FM
Published: 05/09/2022 at 17:35

On June 13, 1980, Candy Montgomery visited her friend Betty Gore at her home in the manicured suburbs of Wylie, Texas. It was a Friday. Montgomery stopped to pick up a bathing suit for Gore’s daughter, who was going to spend the day with the Montgomerys after swim practice. While there, Gore confronted Montgomery about the affair she had with her husband, Allan. Later that night, Gore was found dead in a blood-soaked pantry with 41 ax wounds.

Montgomery confessed. She killed Gore, she said, but in an act of self-defense. It was Gore who first took the axe, Montgomery and his lawyers claimed during a trial four months later. A jury acquitted her of murder. The macabre true story forms the basis for Candy, from hulu ( released on May 9), a five-episode drama from Robin Veith and Nick Antosca, from The Act. Jessica Biel who is also an executive producer, plays the titular assassin alongside Melanie Lynskey who plays the late Gore.

Both Biel and Lynskey were immediately drawn to the script — namely, the psychological complexities of the characters, they tell EW.

“For 90 percent of their lives, they’ve lived very normal suburban lives, and then, boom, this crazy thing happens,” says Biel, noting some of the nuances of getting into a killer’s mindset. “She had to be loved and nice and nice and kind and someone you can really support, and after this crazy thing happens, I still want you to weirdly be behind her,” she says. Lynskey, on the other hand, felt a connection with Gore. “I just felt like I knew her, and parts of me were parts of her,” she says, noting that it was particularly difficult to connect to Gore’s depression.

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Jessica Biel in ‘Candy’

| CREDIT: TINA ROWDEN/HULU

“You’re experiencing this feeling and sometimes it can feel a little repetitive, but that’s how depression feels too,” says Lynskey. the star of yellowjackets and her co-leaders cite themes of female anger and expectations of gender roles in the true-crime series.

“Some of the themes were definitely anger,” says Biel. “Unappreciated is a great word… Loneliness, anger, and I think that social pressure and need for perfection.” Lynskey agrees with her co-star: “There’s this expectation that women do everything and don’t complain,” she says. “And a lot of that was present in this moment and in this community. It’s kind of beautiful to see a story about two women who are struggling and living their lives the best they can, but acting in different ways – coping, not coping – and then it all kind of comes to a head. surfaced in this horrible way.”

The series depicts the bloody fight that leads to Gore’s death; and according to the stars, there was “a lot of discussion” about whether to include it. “The pendulum kind of swung this way, then came back this way, and then it fell back in the middle,” says Biel. “Everything we did was taken from court documents, so we were really trying to be very true to her real story.” Lynskey adds, “I understand the fear of showing something like that because it’s so intense and disturbing, but at the same time, that’s what the story is about. This horrible thing that happened. I don’t know if you want to shy away from the brutality of it. and how absolutely horrible it was and how intensely it must have happened.”

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Melanie Lynskey in ‘Candy’

| CREDIT: TINA ROWDEN/HULU

Journalists Jim Atkinson and Joe Bob Briggs, who wrote Evidence of Love: A True Story of Passion and Death in the Suburb s, helped Biel and company. to piece together what happened in that quiet suburb of Dallas 42 years ago. “They were walking knowledge bombs of this story – the people in the lives of these two families, the survivors, the families and Candy herself,” says Biel. “They interviewed her, which was invaluable to me.”

Although Biel tried to contact Montgomery’s longtime representative to see if “she was interested in having some conversation”, Biel says “she wasn’t interested”. After her acquittal, Montgomery moved to Georgia with her family and divorced her husband, Pat, a few years later. She still resides there and now goes by her maiden name. Biel says Montgomery’s attorney, Robert Udashen, one of two lawyers who defended her in the case, was a “huge resource of information.”

The story will serve as the basis for another series in the HBO Max : Elizabeth Olsen wield the ax like Montgomery, while lily rabe will play Gore in Love and Death. Biel and Lynskey have nothing but kind words for the next take, noting that they are big fans of the cast. “I don’t know what they’re doing, but I’m excited to see it,” says Biel. “I don’t engage with it in a competitive way. I just think it just fuels more enthusiasm for the story, for great performances, exciting female leads and complex female characters. It’s just a good thing.”

Adds Lynskey: “Something in the zeitgeist is bringing this up for some inexplicable reason, and here they are both. I feel the same way. Honestly, I can’t wait to see it.”

the first episode of candy is already streaming on Hulu. New episodes premiere daily through the end of May 13.

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