The Wait For Zac Efron's Ted Bundy Movie Will Probably Be A Long One

Photo: Kevork Djansezian/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty Images.
UPDATE: This story was originally published January 24, 2019 at 3:00 PM.
There are some true crime cases the public will never lose interest in, which is why it's not surprising that two Ted Bundy-themed projects are premiering in the same month. Netflix's docuseries Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes drops on Jan. 24 and the Zac Efron Ted Bundy movie premiered Jan. 26 at the Sundance Film Festival. But for those of you not in Utah (see: most of you) who want to see Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile, you'll have to wait until Netflix releases the Bundy biopic. The streaming giant picked up the film for $9 million with the intent to give the film an "awards season run" according to The Hollywood Reporter.
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That means the film probably won't drop to the public until Fall 2019. The delay is pretty par for the course because, generally, when movies premiere at Sundance it can take anywhere from four to 11 months before they are released in theaters for audiences across the nation. Last year's festival did see one movie get a wide release in just a few weeks, but that's because it was picked up by Netflix before the festival.
Original story follows.
Until it officially becomes available to everyone, Efron fans and true crime consumers can tide themselves over with these details:
It Won't Be Told From Bundy's Perspective
According to Deadline, the movie is told from the point-of-view of Bundy's ex-girlfriend Elizabeth Kloepfer, who didn't know that Bundy was committing heinous crimes and then coming home to her. (Bundy was executed in 1989 for several murders, but confessed to upwards of 30.)
In 1981, Kloepfer wrote a memoir of her time with Bundy under the pseudonym Elizabeth Kendall. It was titled The Phantom Prince: My Life with Ted Bundy. It likely provided great source material for screenplay writer Michael Werwie to get inside her head and show a new perspective of Bundy.
Efron Isn't The Only Big Name In The Cast
Efron is playing Bundy and Lily Collins plays play Elizabeth, per Deadline. Variety reported that Kaya Scodelario plays Bundy's wife Carole Boone, whom he married during his death sentence hearing. Per Variety, the cast is rounded out by stars like John Malkovich who is playing the judge, Jim Parsons as lead prosecutor, and Haley Joel Osment as a detective.
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Efron Claims The Movie Doesn't Glorify Bundy
"He wasn't a person to be glorified," Efron told Entertainment Tonight in March. "It simply tells a story and sort of how the world was able to be charmed over by this guy who was notoriously evil and the vexing position that so many people were put in, the world was put in."
There Are Lots Of Set Photos Out There Already
The actor's been giving fans an inside look at the Bundy movie for months, including several movie stills and a video that shows his transformation from Efron to Bundy.
The Director Is A True Crime Expert
Joe Berlinger is known for his work on true crime documentaries. He was also an executive producer on Netflix's Ted Bundy docuseries, so he knows this case inside and out.
The Title Comes From Ted Bundy's Sentencing
When the judge announced that Bundy would receive the death penalty for his crimes, he didn't hesitate to call Bundy out. The judge's full statement is aired in the finale of the Netflix series as follows:
"The court finds that both of these killings were indeed heinous, atrocious, and cruel and that they were extremely wicked, shockingly evil, vile and the product of a design to inflict a high degree of pain and utter indifference to human life."
More details about the movie will likely emerge after its Sundance premiere. And with these two projects kicking off 2019's true crime wave, it's possible Bundy's story will be a prevailing topic for future true crime series, the way 2016 featured several TV specials about OJ Simpson and JonBenet Ramsey, 2017 had multiple series about the Menendez Brothers, and 2018 was all about The Staircase and Making a Murderer Season 2. Public interest in the Bundy case was naturally intense in the '80s, and the current true crime phase is likely to keep this renewed fascination with his case high as we head into the rest of 2019.
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