Hot off of the TIFF premiere of their new biopic “The Eyes Of Tammy Faye”, stars Jessica Chastain and Andrew Garfield dished about their physical transformations for their roles as former televangelists Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker.
“Well, excuse the pun, but it was like a leap of faith for me,” Chastain says of the face prosthetics and heavy makeup she wore to portray Tammy Faye. “It was after the very first test. I had some nerves because, I mean, the work was so beautiful that they created. But I thought, how am I going to act through it? And I just was like, you know what? I’m just going to show up as big as I can and I’m going to make my way through this makeup. And I realize at the end of the day, it helped me more than anything.”
The biopic centres on evangelist and singer Tammy Faye and her marriage to Jim, with whom she built a TV faith empire. A spectacular fall from grace thrust Tammy Faye into the pop culture spotlight as Jim was convicted of defrauding thousands of investors.
While Chastain is hidden under Tammy Faye’s signature heavy eyeshadow and perma-lined lips, Garfield also found himself in the makeup chair for hours to become Jim Bakker.
“I was in the chair next door getting the same thing,” Garfield laughs, though the process wasn’t all fun and games. “It’s like 5 a.m. till 9 a.m. and you’re just sat in a chair, and we just kind of went stir crazy. And just would say stupid stuff to each other for four hours. We needed it.”
While she may have left Tammy Faye’s makeup behind, Chastain says there’s a small part of her that will stay with her.
“There are things that I connect to with Tammy. And, you know, she just it was so important for her that everyone felt important around her and loved and deserving of love and worthy of God’s grace,” Chastain explains. “And so that’s something I believe that as well. And hopefully, she inspires me to remember that when I meet people.”