Pam & Tommy: the true story behind the show – and why Pamela Anderson is against adaptation

The supermodel has spoken out against the Disney+ series

Lily James' uncanny transformation into iconic supermodel Pamela Anderson shocked the TV world when it was teased at the end of 2021 – and now the highly anticipated new drama, Pam & Tommy, finally drops on streaming platforms this week.

MORE: Here's how you can watch Lily James' scandalous new series Pam & Tommy in the UK

The Downton Abbey actress stars alongside Marvel actor Sebastian Stan as titular characters, Pamela and Tommy Lee, one of the most famous couples of the nineties.

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WATCH: Lily James looks incredible as she transforms in Pamela Anderson for Pam & Tommy

The story focuses on the relationship between the Baywatch star and the Mötley Crüe drummer, most notably the sex tape they recorded, which was then leaked and sold to a public audience. But how true to life is the show? And why was Pamela Anderson against the Hulu/Disney+ series? We found out...

Is Pam & Tommy a true story?

As the synopsis explains Pam & Tommy tells the "true story of the release of the first-ever viral video in history — the sex tape of Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee."

However, while the tape will play a major part in the series, the story will also focus on their relationship, going back to the whirlwind romance that started with them marrying after only knowing each other for four days in 1995 and their multi-million dollar court battle against those who stole and distributed the video.

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The show lands on Hulu and Disney+ this week

The main events did happen in real life, however, the series can be expected to have some artistic license when it comes to re-telling the story. The script also used an extensive report written for Rolling Stone – so it can be presumed that most of the basic elements are true. For example, the show depicts how the tape was stolen and then distributed for money to the public, which happened in real life.

Pamela and Tommy went onto sue Internet Entertainment Group, who were selling the tape, and reached a settlement, but the couple never received any compensation.

Pamela and Tommy met in 1994 and married almost immediately after. They welcomed two sons, Brandon and Dylan, during their relationship but ended up divorcing in 1998.

Why is Pamela Anderson against Pam & Tommy?

Pamela Anderson is yet to speak in public about what she makes of the Disney+ show, however, according to reports, the former supermodel is not happy about the adaptation. Pamela's friend, Courtney Love, even branded the Hulu series "outrageous" on Facebook – but she has since deleted the post in question.

According to The Sun, the Baywatch star branded Pam & Tommy as "disrespectful" and that she had never heard of its leading stars Lily James and Sebastian Stan.

Lily James as Pamela Anderson

What have the stars said about Pam & Tommy?

The director of the series, Craig Gillespie has opened up about Pamela's response to his project. "I absolutely respect any personal decision that she makes on that, and understand where she's coming from," he told Radio Times.

"The thing that gave me comfort was I felt like we really had an opportunity to change the narrative of this story, and to show it from a perspective that people can hopefully learn and grow from. And I felt that we portrayed them in a very empathetic way. I thought the writers did a really nice job with that. So I felt that there was that opportunity, which was the hope."

Lily has also opened up about her role in the show, admitting that she related to the part in many ways. She told IndieWire: "You can relate to a lot of things purely as a woman because, unfortunately, whether you’re Pamela Anderson [or not] there are moments of sexism, or misogyny, or double standards where you’re not treated the same as your male co-worker. It’s sort of an age-old story. You’re undermined or you’re patronized. Your sexuality is weaponized."

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