Renee Zellweger Sets The Record Straight About Wearing A Fat Suit

Which actors play real life characters has been a bit of a source of contention over the years. There's been plenty of chatter about who should and shouldn't be allowed to take on certain roles — and how exactly they should portray them.

One notable controversy that hit the headlines in 2021 when Sarah Paulson was slammed for donning a fat suit to portray Linda Tripp in "American Crime Story," which told the story of the infamous Monica Lewinsky and Bill Clinton scandal.

Plenty of people shared their thoughts on the decision on social media, with Twitter ablaze with controversial opinions. "Re: Sarah Paulson, who I really enjoy, being in a fat suit to play Linda Tripp...if you need a fat suit for an actor to play a role? They should not be playing that role," one person even suggested.

Paulson discussed the controversy with Los Angeles Times in September 2021, admitting, "It's very hard for me to talk about this without feeling like I'm making excuses." She continued, "There's a lot of controversy around actors and fat suits, and I think that controversy is a legitimate one. I think fatphobia is real. I think to pretend otherwise causes further harm."

Someone now facing similar controversy is Renee Zellweger, who viewers noticed was wearing a fat suit in the trailer for the NBC series "The Thing About Pam," in which she portrays Pam Hupp. But she has something to say.

All about accuracy

Renee Zellweger got candid about donning a fat suit for her Pam Hupp role, admitting the decision was made in the interest of accuracy. "The Thing About Pam" tells the real life story of Hupp, who is in prison for life for the 2016 murder of Louis Gumpenberger.

"The idea is to be accurate, the idea is accuracy I think, especially in the case of telling this story, it was really important to as closely resemble Pam Hupp as we possibly could, because she seems so familiar, she seems like someone that we recognize and we know," Zellweger told Entertainment Tonight at the series' premiere on February 28.

"In order for you to better understand how possible it might be that people would project onto her who they are sure that she might be or what kind of person she might [be], it just seemed really important that we got as close to that as we could," she added, telling the outlet she was "amazed" when she saw herself in character for the first time.

This isn't the only time Zellweger has altered her appearance for a role though, and not the first time her weight has been brought into the equation either. The star infamously gained weight to play Bridget Jones, telling Vogue in 2016, "I put on a few pounds. I also put on some breasts and a baby bump. Bridget is a perfectly normal weight and I've never understood why it matters so much."