Agnes Bruckner on Becoming 'Anna Nicole': 'The Transformation Is Really a Reason Alone to See This Movie'
Agnes Bruckner as Anna Nicole Smith in the Lifetime Original Movie, "Anna Nicole."
How do you play someone so distinctive, so famous, and so one-of-a-kind as Anna Nicole Smith?
Well, it takes a village! For Lifetime's "Anna Nicole" movie airing on June 29, a team of people contributed to actress Agnes Bruckner's transformation into the Playboy pinup — which included makeup, wig pieces, and chin-to-rib prosthetics.
The movie traces the blonde bombshell's life, from her modest roots in a small Texas town to gaining the notice of Playboy founder Hugh Hefner to marrying rich octogenarian J. Howard Marshall (played by Martin Landau) to her tragic death from a drug overdose.
Bruckner chatted with Yahoo! TV about what it was like to step into an icon's shoes, Smith's surprising background, and how many hours she had to sit in the makeup chair.
Anna Nicole was such an iconic figure. Did you feel any trepidation about taking on the role?
Definitely. I was very nervous and anxious about taking the part, because she was so iconic and so famous and larger-than-life. I asked myself "Am I going to pull this off?" and "What kind of movie are we making?" and all those questions. But after meeting Mary Harron, the director, and [producer] Judith Verno, who I've worked with before on "The Craigslist Killer," also for Lifetime, we really wanted to show people a different side of Anna Nicole. We really wanted to tell a different story. All those things gave me the confidence to play the part.
You had to go through a big physical transformation. What was that like?
It was really amazing. We had an amazing team of Emmy Award-winning people. We worked so hard and we had prosthetic boobs and prosthetic cheek and neck pieces for when she was heavier. I bleached my own hair. And we also had wig pieces ... she had such different looks throughout her journey. The wardrobe team created so many of these beautiful dresses that you see in the movie from scratch, working around the clock. The transformation is really a reason alone to see this movie, because it's so unbelievable. It gave everyone chills when I showed up to set dressed as her.