Carpool Karaoke: Oscars edition? Renee Zellweger (‘Judy’) tells voters about practicing Garland’s songs on the freeway [WATCH]

The Judy Garland biopic “Judy” opens on September 27, but lead actress Renee Zellweger previewed the film for Oscar voters on September 21 at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater along with director Ruper Goold and producer David Livingstone. Watch their complete “Academy Conversation” moderated by Dave Karger above.

Portraying a real-life star as iconic as Judy Garland is a herculean task, especially since Zellweger did her own singing. She even prepared in part by doing what a lot of us do even when we’re not getting ready to play one of the most famous entertainers of the 20th century: by singing in the car. She joked that if you’d have rolled up alongside her on the freeway, “you would have probably called EMS thinking that the lady next to you was having a seizure. I’m sure of it. There was a lot of contorting the torso to get the sound out initially. That, or else you might have just thought, ‘Wow, she’s really having fun in there, isn’t she?'”

But Zellweger couldn’t have done it alone. She was quick to praise the film’s hair and makeup artists for helping her get into character, as well as costume designer Jany Temine, “who made these beautiful costumes, which are just out of this world … She used antique sequins from France from the period … and then she fit them to my assumed posture so that they wouldn’t zip up if I wasn’t standing like I was supposed to … to be disciplined by antique sequins.”

And Garland’s presence was inescapable on set. “It felt like she was everywhere — her photographs, and the sound of her voice, and interviews, and her music,” Zellweger explained. “It was almost palpable in every room that we were working in. This essence of this extraordinary person and the legacy of her work was very much alive.”

Be sure to make your Oscar nominee predictions today so that Hollywood insiders can see how their films and performers are faring in our odds. You can keep changing your predictions as often as you like until just before nominees are announced on January 13. And join in the fun debate over the 2020 Academy Awards taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our film forums. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.

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