When my friend texted me that Tonya Harding was going to be speaking in Los Angeles, I interrupted my own show to buy a ticket. A screening of I, Tonya on a rooftop with the white trash athletic icon herself? So I get the ticket.
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They had the script, by veteran screenwriter Steven Rogers, the one that had burned up Hollywood with its dark humor, its cast of unreliable narrators and its promise of shedding new light on a story that had wrapped up a quarter century ago. They had the star—Margot Robbie, the year-old Australian who had seemed in most ways to be the opposite of Tonya Harding but who had put in months of work to embody the world-class figure skater. Janney suggested a solution: Perhaps her monstrous character could suck, instead, from an oxygen tank.
Breaking form with typical Hollywood biographies, I, Tonya is packaged as a kind of documentary, with contradictory confessional interviews by Jeff Gillooly Sebastian Stan and Harding Margot Robbie driving the story forward. The format gives the movie a true-to-life feel while trafficking in events that feel too absurd to be real. So what in I, Tonyais accurate, and what can be chalked up to artistic license?
Sign in. LaVona Golden : Call that a clean skate, for Christ's sake? Skater Mom : Do not swear in front of the kids.
More than two decades on, Tonya is still reluctant to discuss the attack that brought her more fame than figure-skating ever could — despite currently walking the red carpet at various premieres of the Oscar-tipped biopic of her story. The movie I, Tonya — which stars Margot Robbie as the shamed skater — throws fresh light on the affair by basing the script on interviews with Tonya and her ex-husband. In JanuaryNancy was in Detroit, preparing for the Winter Games in Lillehammer, Norway, when she was struck with a baton on the back of her right thigh.
Filled with voiceover, direct address to the camera, and occasional freeze-frames on its most dramatic moments, I, Tonya frequently risks that kind of over-explanation as it recounts one of the most famous tabloid stories of the 90s, a saga that has been explained to death over the past two decades. But, yes: like America, Tonya Harding continues to fascinate—particularly as played by a gripping and forceful Margot Robbiewho commands a film that sometimes feels like a mad dash through a story so absurd and tawdry it just has to be true. Robbie plays Harding from ages 15 to 47, through fights and tears and triple axels and multiple awful wigs.
The disgraced skater is losing weight and skating again, and is excited to see her story told on the big screen. Note: This article originally appeared on Oct. The ensuing scandal became an international sensation. For the media, the narrative was perfect: Kerrigan was the pretty, poised, innocent victim.
A native of Portland, OregonHarding was raised primarily by her mother, who enrolled her in ice skating lessons beginning at age four. Harding would spend much of her early life training, eventually dropping out of high school to devote her time to the sport. After climbing the ranks in the U.