"A cheap knockoff." Why everyone is talking about Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee.

After much anticipation, Pam & Tommy is finally here, premiering on the streaming service Disney+ this Wednesday.

The limited series stars Lily James as Pamela Anderson, and Sebastian Stan as Tommy Lee, in the real-life story about the Hollywood couple who famously wed after four days of being together.

The central focus of the series is on the pair's marriage after their private sex tape was stolen from their home and shared online without their consent.

Watch the teaser trailer for Pam & Tommy here. Post continues after video.

Video via Hulu.

Before you watch it, here's everything you need to know about Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee's relationship and the TV series.

Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee's relationship.

Playboy cover girl turned Baywatch actress Pamela Anderson, and Mötley Crüe drummer Tommy Lee, first met on New Year's Eve in 1994, at a club on Sunset Strip in Hollywood.

Six weeks later, the couple met for the second time when Lee flew to meet Anderson on a photoshoot in Cancun, Mexico. Ninety-six hours into the trip, they got married.

Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee. Image: Getty. 


A few weeks after the shotgun wedding, the couple made their now-infamous sex tape. And in 1995, that sex tape was stolen from their home and leaked online.

The couple welcomed two children together: Brandon (born in 1996) and Dylan (born in 1997), before their relationship ended in 1998, after Lee allegedly physically assaulted Anderson in their home, while she was holding their son.

Lee spent six months in jail after pleading no contest.

Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee's sex tape.

In 1995, an electrician named Rand Gauthier broke into Tommy Lee and Pamela Anderson's home and stole their safe containing the couple’s jewels and guns, later discovering it also contained their sex tape. 

Gauthier had been hired by the couple to work on the renovation of their Malibu mansion but Anderson and Lee felt his work was shoddy, so they fired him and refused to pay him.

When Gauthier later returned to get his tools, Lee pointed a gun at him and demanded he leave the property.

According to Rolling Stone, the electrician spent the entire summer of 1995 planning to break into their home and steal their safe as revenge.

After stealing it and realising the tape was inside, Gauthier - who also worked in the porn industry - used his contacts to make several copies and sell them online.

Listen to The Spill, Mamamia's daily entertainment podcast. In this episode, co-hosts Kee Reece and Laura Brodnik discuss Pam & Tommy. Post continues after audio.

Two months after the tape was stolen, Anderson and Lee realised it was gone, and Lee filed a police report and hired a private investigator to find out what had happened. But at that point, it was too late.

Anderson and Lee tried to block the video's release, with the actress suing the video distribution company, but the tape was eventually released online and Anderson dropped her suit.

Rolling Stone reports the tape took two years to go viral and when it did, it made an estimated US$77 million in less than 12 months through legitimate sales alone. And neither Anderson nor Lee received a cent.

"I made not one dollar. It was stolen property. We made a deal to stop all the shenanigans," she said during a 2015 appearance on Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen, according to People.

"I was seven months pregnant with Dylan and thinking it was affecting the pregnancy with the stress and said, 'I’m not going to court anymore. 

"I’m not being deposed anymore by these horny, weird lawyer men. I don’t want to talk about my vagina anymore or my public sex — anything.'"


Lee has since shared the leaking of their sex tape played a massive role in the breakdown of their marriage.

"Not being able to do anything about [the tape] was adding so much frustration and stress to our relationship," he said in 2014, according to Us Magazine.

"It was just consuming us."

The new series about them: Pam & Tommy.

American streaming service Hulu has described Pam & Tommy as a "comedic limited series on the true story behind the release of the first-ever viral video in history — the sex tape of Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee."

It stars Lily James as Pamela Anderson and Sebastian Stan as Tommy Lee. 

Seth Rogen has been cast as Rand Gauthier, and Nick Offerman will play the pornographer Milton Ingley, who reproduced and marketed the sex tape. 

Taylor Schilling will play Gauthier's wife.


Pam & Tommy is directed by Craig Gillespie (from the movie I, Tonya).

The reaction to Pam & Tommy.

Since the announcement of Pam & Tommy, there have been mixed feelings about whether it should be made, especially since the sex tape is - or was - private.

Neither Pamela Anderson nor Tommy Lee were involved in the making of it, and both have reacted differently.

Speaking to Entertainment Tonight in September, Lee shared how he's "stoked" for it to come out.

"I know Sebastian, he’s playing me. From what he’s told me, really beautiful story," Lee, now 59, said.

"I think a lot of people would think it’s one thing, but it’s really about privacy and how things got crazy then. There are different laws now.

"The story’s actually cool. What actually happened wasn’t, but [Stan] tells me it’s pretty wild. I feel like it was forever ago. But it’s a cool story, and people need to know. It’s cool. I’m stoked."

While Anderson, now 54, hasn't directly commented on the series, a source close to the actress told The Sun: "Pamela has no intention of watching this God awful show, absolutely not. Never."

"She’s never heard of the actors playing her or Tommy and doesn’t care to know them... She and her family think the show is a cheap knockoff."

In May, musician Courtney Love came to Anderson's defence after the first-look photos of Lily James and Sebastian Stan in character were published.

"I find this so f**king outrageous. My heart goes out to Pammy further causing her complex trauma. And shame on Lily James whoever the f**k she is. #vile," she wrote in a since-deleted Facebook post.

Pam & Tommy premieres on Wednesday, February 2, 2022, on Disney+, followed by a new season of Mamamia's podcast Extraordinary Stories, all about the couple and their relationship. 

Feature Image: Getty/Instagram/@pamandtommyonhulu.

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