On the heels of HBO’s biopic on the tumultuous trial of legendary music producer Phil Spector, Spector’s wife, Rachelle, joined The K-EARTH 101 Morning Show to share her insights on the controversial film premiering this Sunday.
Rachelle had a chance to see the movie that stars Al Pacino as her husband and Helen Mirren as defense attorney Linda Kenney Baden, and told Gary that “it wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be” in terms of putting Phil in a bad light.
“It looked really bad written on paper,” said Rachelle. “But it’s completely different when you see it on the big screen – once you get past the cheesy gun waving, screaming and yelling, and the whole over the top acting of it.”
Though she doesn’t feel Pacino’s “cheesy” portrayal accurately depicted her husband in the movie, Rachelle does think the film is on point with its perspective of the incident. Phil is currently serving a prison sentence of 19 years to life after being convicted of the second-degree murder of actress Lana Clarkson in 2009. Clarkson was found dead of a gunshot wound in Phil’s home in Feb. 2003.
“What they did portray correctly throughout the film is the fact that Lana Clarkson was loaded on Vicodin and tequila, was in a very depressed mental state and ultimately died by her own hand and not by my husband,” she added.
On whether the stories on Phil’s wild behavior and owning guns had any influence on his conviction, Rachelle claims many of those infamous stories are “hearsay” that have been blown out of proportion over the years. Rachelle, who married Phil in 2006 before he went to prison, adds that she’s never heard any stories of violent behavior associated with Phil.
“A lot of these things have just circulated through the years,” she said. “Who knows what’s real and not real, but from the man that I know, and I’m friends with a lot of the people that he’s been associated with for decades, and I haven’t heard any of that stuff.”
Rachelle is hoping HBO’s biopic will help in the defense’s favor by swaying public opinion on Phil’s murder conviction. She’s currently waiting on the results of an appeal filed on his conviction that’s made it up to the Federal level.
“I’m just hoping by speaking out and this movie showing a different perspective regarding the situation that someone somewhere out there will do the right thing,” said Rachelle.
She notes however, that the though the film is based off of true events, the character portrayals are not based on fact. For this reason, the film’s director, David Mamet, added a disclaimer at the beginning saying that’s it’s purely a “work of fiction.”
“At least they had the decency to say, okay obviously they didn’t depict my husband accurately,” she said. “If they wanted to, they could have gone and met him. They could have genuinely made an amazing film with the actors and money involved.”
Rachelle says she regularly visits Phil in prison every weekend having even gotten her pilot’s license to make the traveling easier on herself.
“We’re allowed one hug and one kiss. You’re allowed to hold hands throughout the visit and a visit can last anywhere between five or six hours,” said Rachelle. “I’m just standing by my man, and that’s what women do. I’m devoted to this person and fighting that he’s innocent.”
Rachelle is showing that devotion in a brand new single written as a tribute to her husband called “P.S. I Love You.” Her single is available now on iTunes and Amazon with a 5-song EP to be released this spring. To hear a clip of Rachelle’s love song to Phil, click here.
HBO’s Phil Spector premieres this Sunday, March 24 at 9 p.m. Listen to our extended web interview with Rachelle to hear more about the case, her insights on the movie, and her new song paying tribute to her husband.
Part one: Rachelle shares her thoughts on HBO’s movie on Phil Spector and what they did/didn’t get right.