Is Legally Blonde Based on a True Story?

Starring Reese Witherspoon, ‘Legally Blonde’ revolves around Elle, a fashionable sorority queen who can’t deal with the fact that Warner, her boyfriend, dumped her. So, when he enrolls in Harvard Law School with the hope of becoming a politician someday, Elle studies for months to get into the same school to win him back. Unfortunately, Elle later learns that Warner is now engaged to Vivian, his old girlfriend. The couple makes fun of Elle’s ambitions, leading her to decide that she will prove them wrong.

As the story unfolds, she learns not only to value herself but also never to let anyone decide what she can or cannot do. The comical yet somewhat inspiring story of Elle Woods often makes viewers wonder if the film is entirely fictional or rooted in reality. If you too have the same question, then we may be able to provide you with an answer.

Is Legally Blonde Based on a True Story?

‘Legally Blonde’ is partially based on a true story. The plot for the film is taken from Amanda Brown’s novel ‘Legally Blonde.’ Amanda was studying at Stanford Law School, and it had been just one week when she realized that she was in the wrong place. Failing to make many friends at Stanford, she started writing about her day-to-day adventures. Describing her experience in an interview with sfgate, the author said, “I had plenty of time to watch people and write letters. I was just writing letters to my friends to kind of amuse myself. By the end of my first semester, I had like 300 pages.”

The author continued, “I wrote it all on pink paper, with my pink furry pen. I finally found an agent who picked it up out of a slush pile because it was on pink paper. It went out to studios and publishing houses the same day, and overnight there was a bidding war. MGM bought it. But it was rejected by everybody on the publishing side.”

But interestingly, Amanda realized much later what she wanted to do with all those letters. She told Stanford Magazine, “I was sitting in tort class when the novel popped into my head.” The author later interjected, “I wanted to do a parody of law school.” So, even though there is no real Elle Woods who studied for months to get into a reputed law school to get back her boyfriend, much of what we see in the film is inspired by the real-life experiences of Amanda Brown at Stanford Law School.

Several real-life inspired scenes in the film were ideas of screenwriters as well. One good example of such a scene is the voting of Elle’s sorority group on toilet paper at the beginning of the film. Co-screenwriter Karen McCullah experienced it at James Madison University, and in an interview, Karen said that she offered members of the sorority extra points if they managed to steal toilet paper rolls from the administration building.

It almost sounds absurd that a real-life story can inspire such a scene, but for ‘Legally Blonde,’ it’s a common pattern. Even though the story of the film is not entirely true, the movie does have many elements that are directly inspired by real-life events, especially from Amanda’s experiences at Standford Law School.

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