The real Candy Montgomery stunned her small Texas town in June 1980 when she was accused of murdering Betty Gore, a middle school teacher she had become friends with after they met at church. At the time, Candy was also having an affair with Betty’s husband, Allan Gore, which some speculated was the motive behind the killing. Though she claimed self-defense, the mother-of-two did ultimately admit to slashing Betty 41 times with an axe and became a pariah in her town.
In the series, Biel plays the titular role opposite Melanie Lynskey‘s Betty, a seemingly kind and outgoing woman who spends her time helping her friends and going to church. Eventually, Candy becomes dissatisfied with her life and begins the affair that will soon unravel her life and the life of everyone around her. “In this community, it’s been a big shock,” Biel says in the trailer, which was released on Wednesday, April 13. “We were friends.”
The clip hints at Candy’s double life, beginning with Betty offering up a toast in her friend’s honor. “I am so touched by your generosity,” she says. “The compassion and friendship you’ve shown — you’re just a sweetheart.”
However, Candy doesn’t seem quite so sweet as she sits in an interrogation room and stares down the cops interviewing her. After one of them points out that she has “a couple” broken nails, Biel’s character’s demeanor turns chilling. “Oh, they’re just so brittle. I really try to grow them, but I can’t,” she says with a smile, before clearing her throat and steeling herself for more questions.
Following 2017’s The Sinner and 2019’s Limetown, Candy marks the third series that Biel has produced and starred in. After realizing that she wasn’t happy with the path she was taking in her career, the Minnesota native decided to take the reins, finding new roles and opportunities for herself.
“I just thought, ‘Nobody would ever think of me for something like this,’” she told Backstage in May 2018 about making The Sinner. “Nobody would ever offer me something [like this]; nobody would ever let me come in and audition. And if they would, I probably wouldn’t get it because it’s just not what you’re used to seeing me do.”
Speaking about her decision to begin producing her own content, she continued, “I’ve had a great career, and I’m very proud of my career, and I feel very lucky — but [my manager and I] were looking at the titles of the movies that I’ve done, and I just didn’t see myself in there. … I really need to step out in a big way, and I was just not getting the opportunities that I wanted.”
The opportunity to play a role like Candy Montgomery is one that few would pass up. In addition to the Hulu series, HBO Max greenlit their own drama series about the murder of Betty Gore, Love and Death, starring Elizabeth Olsen as Candy Montgomery.
Keep scrolling for everything we know about Candy ahead of its May premiere: