As moviegoers head to see “I, Tonya” in theaters this weekend, those who remember the Tonya Harding scandal may come away with an entirely different view of the disgraced former Olympian. It’s no surprise then that Harding, who made international headlines for her supposed involvement in the 1994 assault of Nancy Kerrigan, is a big fan of the film. “She loved the movie. There were parts she didn’t like, but I think mostly she was really excited about it,” Allison Janney said on a recent visit to “The Ellen Degeneres Show.”
Janney plays Harding’s shockingly abusive mother in the lively dark comedy, which stars an excellent Margot Robbie in the titular role and was directed by Craig Gillespie. Janney’s disturbingly hilarious performance as the tough-talking, chain-smoking Lavona Harding has been hailed as one of her finest, and could potentially earn Janney her first Oscar nomination.
“She loved my performance a lot, which I was like, ‘Oh, you poor thing,” said Janney of meeting Harding at the film’s premiere in Los Angeles.
Janney continued: “I just wanted to giver her a hug, ’cause back when we first heard about this story we were told what to think about her and we were told she was a villain. Actually, it was a lot more complicated than that, the story of what happened to her. And I think people come away with a lot more compassion for her.”
Watch the interview below: