Jessica Chastain can soon be seen partnered up with Andrew Garfield to tell the story of what was going on behind the cameras in the world of internationally famous and eccentric televangelists Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker in The Eyes of Tammy Faye. If you turned on the tube on any Sunday in the 80s, you could find the program that set the formula and solidified the definition of televangelists for decades to come. Jessica Chastain reveals Tammy Faye’s unique look took over 7 hours in the make-up chair to achieve.
“The longest was actually 7 &½ hours. And I got to set and I was so panicky. I started to have hot flashes because it’s so heavy and hot. I was afraid. It was like going on a long-distance flight every day. Because if it takes 7 &½ hours to put on, it’s going to take at least two hours to get off. It was concerning to me. I was worried about my circulation. By the time I got on set that first day that was 7 &½ hours, I was like, ‘I have no energy left.’ And she’s supposed to show up with so much energy. That was the ’90s look – the very end. That’s the most prosthetics I’ve worn. Even the bronzer and the foundation are so much darker, the lashes are thicker. The makeup gets heavier as she gets older.”
Jessica Chastain continued, “I think for sure I’ve done some permanent damage to my skin on this. Listen, I eat very pure and I take very good care of my skin and I stay out of the sun and all that stuff. But it’s heavy. And when you’re wearing it all day every day – the weight of it on your body, it stretches your skin out. I finally took it off and I was like, ‘I look 50 years old!’ (Laughs.) No, I’m kidding. But it’s fine. It’s for my art.”
Though initially famous for their spirited TV program, the couple ultimately garnered even more publicity when Jim Bakker was indicted, convicted, and imprisoned on numerous counts of fraud and conspiracy in 1989. Tammy Faye Bakker was not proven in the court of law to be guilty, but was seen as guilty in the eyes of the public, which eventually crumbled their enterprises.
The official synopsis reads, “An intimate look at the extraordinary rise, fall and redemption of televangelist Tammy Faye Bakker. In the 1970s and 80s, Tammy Faye and her husband, Jim Bakker, rose from humble beginnings to create the world’s largest religious broadcasting network and theme park, and were revered for their message of love, acceptance and prosperity. Tammy Faye was legendary for her indelible eyelashes, her idiosyncratic singing, and her eagerness to embrace people from all walks of life. However, it wasn’t long before financial improprieties, scheming rivals, and scandal toppled their carefully constructed empire.”
Director Michael Showalter (The Big Sick) brought the story to the big screen with the help of the documentary of the same name. The Eyes of Tammy Faye has also cast Vincent D’Onofrio as fellow televangelist Jerry Falwell and Cherry Jones as Tammy Faye’s mother, Rachel. Check it out in theaters September 17. This news originated at The LA Times.