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Real-Life Bernie Released into the Loving Arms of Richard Linklater

By Courtney Enlow | Miscellaneous | May 7, 2014 |


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In the most movie-ready, precious ruling this side of Wes Anderson being sentenced to three years in an undersea pod with Bill Murray and a talking fox, Bernie Tiede, the inspiration for Richard Linklater’s film Bernie, was released from prison under the stipulation that he live in Linklater’s garage.

As odd as it sounds, Linklater has actually been a driving force in Tiede’s release. After his film brought attention to the case, lawyers requested additional psychiatric examinations, revealing “deep lingering trauma,” including repeated sexual abuse in his teen years.

In addition to the $10,000 bond, Tiede needs to receive counseling for sexual abuse, remain in the Austin area, maintain employment as a legal clerk, and live in Linklater’s garage. “Myself and others are determined to help him in any way we can,” the director said, according to the Texas Tribune.

I don’t want to sound insensitive to what is a fascinatingly complicated story, one that does of course include the loss of a life. But so help me Jesus, someone get Linklater’s people on the phone, bring over a couple cameras and make this a reality show. Maybe Parker Posey moves in, too.

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