When Jill Clayburgh was cast in NBC’s Reason for Living: The Jill Ireland Story, the contrast intrigued her: Clayburgh has conducted her life privately, while Ireland revealed intimate details of her cancer and her son’s drug addiction in two autobiographies. (The second, Life Lines, inspired the film.) ”I really tried to wrap my brain around it,” says the two-time Oscar nominee. ”It’s so unlike my instinct to reveal things, and Ireland was on The Joan Rivers Show two weeks after her son died. When she was dying herself, she was right out there. I could never do that to myself, but I know it fed her.” NBC’s production faced troubling obstacles: Both Ireland, who had intended to play herself, and her son died before filming began, and Ireland’s husband, Charles Bronson, subsequently sought to block the project. Executive producer Bonny Dore says that the dispute was settled ”amicably,” and Ireland’s presence in the movie was strong: She’s credited as co-executive producer, and Clayburgh drew on hours of videotaped interviews with her background. ”She was close to death,” Clayburgh notes. ”But at a time when most people would have said, ‘Hand me the drugs’ she was passionately involved in the script.”
Posted May 17 1991 — 12:00 AM EDT
- 'House of Cards' premiere react: Blood on the Tracks
- Skrillex + Diplo release Jack U debut
- 'Empire' star Jussie Smollett on the power of Jamal's coming-out
- 'Focus' aims to lift box office crown from 'Fifty Shades of Grey'
- Bruce Willis indie-thriller 'Wake' halts production due to lack of funding
- 'How to Get Away with Murder' creator on season 1 success, season 2 ideas
- Catwoman comes out as bisexual in comic
- 'Empire': New EW cast portraits and behind-the-scenes photos
- 'Dancing with the Stars': Sizing up the season 20 cast
- 'Parks' 2017: What we embrace/dread in world of tomorrow
- Oscars 2015: EW exclusive rehearsal photos
- Oscars 2015 backstage: EW all-access photo pass
- Taylor, Rita & Orlando, Amanda and More!