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Report: Renee Zellweger to play St. Charles County murderer Pam Hupp

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Renee Zellweger has signed on to play convicted killer Pam Hupp in a miniseries about the 2011 murder of Elizabeth "Betsy" Faria in Lincoln County and the fatal shooting of a St. Charles County man in 2016, Deadline Hollywood reported Thursday.

The series will be based on a series of NBC "Dateline" episodes on the case, Deadline said.

Faria's husband, Rusell Faria, was convicted of murder and sentenced to life in prison before that conviction was overturned amid questions about conduct in the trial, including a judge's refusal to allow Faria's lawyers to present Hupp as an alternate suspect.

Faria, who now lives in St. Charles, was acquitted in a 2015 retrial after spending 41 months in prison, with a judge calling the investigation “disturbing” and saying it “raised more questions than answers.” Faria would later claim in a lawsuit that investigators fabricated evidence against him and ignored Hupp.

In 2016, Hupp fatally shot a mentally and physically disabled man in her O'Fallon, Missouri, home, telling police that he tried to kidnap her to get "Russ' money."

In 2019, she entered a “no contest” plea to a murder charge and admitted that prosecutors had enough evidence to convict her. Prosecutors said Hupp shot Louis Gumpenberger in an elaborate but amateurish plot to divert attention from herself in a reinvestigation of Betsy Faria’s murder.

Hupp is serving a life sentence for Gumpenberger's killing. She has repeatedly denied killing Faria.

NBC announced last year that it was crafting a scripted TV show based on the case, which was the subject of a joint Post-Dispatch-KTVI Fox 2 investigation in 2014 and has gone on to inspire several news shows. 

Robert Patrick • 314-340-8131

@rxpatrick on Twitter

RPatrick@post-dispatch.com

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