Is Under The Bridge Based On A True Story? The Hulu Series Is Hard To Watch

Lily Gladstone and Riley Keough play detectives solving the murder of a 14-year-old girl.

It seems like everyone is talking about Under the Bridge on Hulu right now. The new limited series starring Oscar nominee Lily Gladstone and Riley Keough tells the story of a horrific murder of a 14-year-old girl in Victoria, Canada, and people are wondering if this could be based on a true story.

[Note: Spoiler alerts ahead for Under the Bridge on Hulu ahead!]

Under the Bridge is based on the 2005 book by Rebecca Godfrey.

The Hulu series is based on the 2005 book of the same name written by Rebecca Godfrey, which detailed the brutal beating and murder of 14-year-old Reena Virk on the west coast of Canada in 1992. Godfrey’s book recounted the events leading up to Reena’s murder as well as the ensuing investigation that found the 14-year-old had died at the hands of her peers.

Reena’s murder by her classmates became international news, and one investigator who worked on the case at the time noted in a 2016 interview that it acted as a “wake-up call” to the effects of bullying on young people. “Many people who worked with students at the time got a wake-up call that we need to pay really close attention to what’s happening with our kids,” Constable Tom Woods told the Vancouver Sun.

Under the Bridge follows the investigation into Reena’s murder.

Under the Bridge sees Detective Cam Bentland (Lily Gladstone) looking into the disappearance of Reena Virk (Vritika Gupta), who has been missing for three days. She is joined by author Rebecca Godfrey (Riley Keough), who hopes to interview witnesses who might be more willing to open up to her. The two slowly discover that Reena has been murdered, not by a serial killer but by her classmates, despite the fact that “young girls are the ones we are supposed to protect, not be protected from.” It’s a discovery that shakes up not just their own community, but the world at large.

What happened to Reena’s murderers?

Six of the teenagers who attacked Reena in November, 1997 were convicted of assault causing bodily harm and sentenced to one year of probation, while two other teens, Warren Glowatski and Kelly Ellard, were convicted of second-degree murder.

Glowatski, who was tried first, was convicted in 1999 and sentenced to life in prison. He was granted parole in 2010. Ellard’s case was a bit more complicated. Initially tried in March 2000, her conviction was overturned on appeal in February 2003. She was tried twice more, resulting in one mistrial and an automatic life sentence in April 2005. She was granted “day parole” in 2017, which was the soonest she was eligible. Day parol allows her to be out of custody during the day before returning to prison or a halfway house by a certain time. She currently has two children, one born in prison one on day parole.

How can you watch Under the Bridge?

The eight-part limited series is streaming now on Hulu, but be warned: It’s not an easy story to watch.