Jessica Biel Reveals How Justin Timberlake Went Behind Her Back to Get Candy Role

Jessica Biel revealed how Justin Timberlake secretly went after a role on her Hulu limited series Candy, in which co-star Melanie Lynskey's husband, Jason Ritter, also appears.

By Cydney Contreras May 12, 2022 3:49 PMTags

Justin Timberlake is more than happy to play a supporting role to his wife, Jessica Biel.

In fact, the singer was so eager to star alongside his wife in the Hulu limited series Candy, he basically did it for free.

Biel—also a producer on the series—told Entertainment Weekly that Justin saw the scripts and expressed interest in playing Detective Steve Deffibaugh, but she told him the production couldn't afford him. "'We don't have any money left' was basically the conversation," she recalled. "And he said, 'I want to play this part.' And I said, 'Yeah. Okay.' He goes, 'No, no. I want to play this part.'" 

Biel went on to reach out to her producing partner Michelle Purple to ask if the role had already been booked, but Timberlake, who she shares two children with, was one step ahead of her: "She goes, 'I know. He already called me about it.'"

Then, she and Purple reached out to showrunner Robin Veith—who Timberlake had pitched himself to as well. "Literally, they started talking and had a creative discussion about what that could mean," Biel explained. "She was excited about the idea."

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All that they had left to do was figure out how to pay the Grammy Award winner—but again, Timberlake had already thought it all through. Biel remembered, "We told him, 'We can't pay you,' and he goes, 'I don't care about getting paid. I just want you to pay for my wig and I want my prosthetic belly.' We were like, 'That we can do.'"

Tina Rowden/Hulu

As for how Jason Ritter booked his role, Veith actually approached Melanie Lynskey, who plays Betty Gore, about casting her husband. "It was over Christmastime and we were all texting on a group text," Lynskey recalled. "I texted a picture of Jason with our daughter, and he had grown a mustache just out of pure boredom. Robin was like, 'Wait a minute. He looks very period appropriate.'"

They ended up having Jason shave the mustache, but he didn't mind. "He loves working and he was happy to be involved," Lynskey shared, adding, "And he loved Justin, so that really worked out." 

Biel and Lynskey couldn't be prouder of their husbands, who formed a "bromance" while working on the show. The actresses shared that they couldn't keep the men apart, even when they weren't filming. 

"You see their chemistry," Biel said of Ritter and Timberlake's scenes together. "They're both so funny and really genuinely good at their jobs. They just made it a lot of fun. There was a lot of improv going on, which gave me the freedom to improv."

And while Timblerlake played the detective interrogating Biel's character, Candy Montgomery, it wasn't awkward in the slightest. Biel explained, "It was fun being an adversary with him. It was more fun than, I think, being a romantic lead, you know what I mean? It was more fun to be head to head. Kind of going at each other was great."

Candy airs in a five-night event that started May 9 and concludes May 13.

Click here to read more about the true crime that inspired the series.

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