Zac Efron’s latest role as infamous serial killer Ted Bundy in Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile is getting a lot of attention with its recent premiere at the Sundance Film Festival, and according to one of Bundy’s survivors that is exactly how it should be.
Kathy Kleiner Rubin, who was 20-years-old and a member of Florida State University’s Chi Omega sorority when Bundy attacked her and her roommate in their bedroom in 1978 recently spoke to TMZ about the film and while critics have brought up concerns that the film makes too much of Bundy’s good looks and charm, Rubin thinks it’s necessary as it portrays Bundy as he actually presented himself.
“I don’t have a problem with people looking at it, and as long as they understand that what they’re watching wasn’t a normal person,” Rubin said. “I believe that in order to show him exactly the way he was, it’s not really glorifying him, but it’s showing him, and when they do say positive and wonderful things about him. … that’s what they saw, that’s what Bundy wanted you to see.”
Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile stars Efron as Bundy, but the film actually follows the story not form his perspective but from that Elizabeth Kloepfer (played by Lily Collins in the film) Bundy’s longtime girlfriend whose is forced to consider that the man she loves may actually be a psychopath. Kloepfer spent years denying the accusations against Bundy, but ultimately turned him into the police, only coming to understand the true extent and horror of his actions until his execution date neared. In addition to Efron and Collins, the film stars John Malkovich, Jim Parsons, Kaya Scodelario, and Haley Joel Osment and is directed by Joe Berlinger.
Rubin isn’t alone in thinking that there could be a value in Efron’s performance as Bundy. John Henry Browne, who served as Bundy’s lawyer in the ’70s and ’80s, previously told TMZ that Efron’s charisma could effectively recreate what were components of how Bundy was able to coerce his victims, though Browne also said that the true test would be if Efron could also capture the killer’s “essence of evilness.”
Bundy took credit for having killed at least 30 people, mostly women and young girls, between 1974 and 1978 though some experts believe the actual number is much higher. He ultimately received three death sentences for his crimes and was executed in the electric chair in 1989.
Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile does not yet have a release date.
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