Crazy news out of Hollywood: filmmaking icons Randy Barbato and Fenton Bailey have announced their next project, a biopic of inspirational speaker and queer icon Tammy Faye Bakker entitled The Eyes of Tammy Faye. They’ve also found their cast.
For Barbato and Bailey, The Eyes of Tammy Faye marks a homecoming of sorts. The pair rose to infamy with a documentary of the same title in 2000. Now the duo hopes to bring the story of Bakker’s rise and fall to an even larger audience.
Oscar-nominee Jessica Chastain will don the false eyelashes to play Tammy Faye, while fellow Oscar-nominated actor Andrew Garfield will play Jim Bakker. Vincent D’Onofrio joins the cast as Bakker’s scheming associate (and staunch hater of LGBTQ people) Jerry Fallwell, while Gabriel Olds (of Surrogates) will play another Bakker-Fallwell associate, Pat Robertson.
Related: Did Tammy Faye Plan Her Death?
In the 1980s, Tammy Faye Bakker had an infamous rise of her own as a televangelist. Alongside then-husband Jim Bakker, the pair developed a multimedia faith-based empire which included a television network and Heritage USA, a theme park based on the stories of the Bible. A sex scandal later disgraced Jim Bakker and sent Tammy Faye into a tailspin. The revelation of financial improprieties in the development of Heritage USA further sullied the image of the pair, whose marriage dissolved around the same time. Jim Bakker’s close associates Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell took over control of the Bakker media empire (unscrupulously, according to Tammy Faye), while Jim Bakker landed in prison. Tammy Faye later remarried and continued her career as a speaker and activist, working for the acceptance of LGBTQ people within Christianity and American society.
Production has already begun on The Eyes of Tammy Faye, though no release date has been set.