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The actress opened up about her close relationship with her brother Drew and how he helped her through a rough breakup

By Georgia Slater
January 14, 2020 11:49 AM
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Renée Zellweger is shouting out her brother for always having her back.

In an interview for Vanity Fair‘s Hollywood issue, the Oscar-winning actress, 50, shared that she and her brother Drew are more than just siblings — he’s her “best friend.”

The Judy star, who just picked up an Oscar nomination, explained that Drew is a “very” protective brother, and “always has been,” recalling one moment when he helped the actress get through a hard time.

“He also helps me keep perspective, like with my very first big public breakup,” she said. “And it was really difficult, and my first time to really be splashed all over the tabloids in a way that…it’s an adjustment.”

Drew “picked up all the tabloids that were at the checkout center at the supermarket,” she continued. “He had come out to visit me because he’s like, ‘I’m coming up there. If we talk about this one more time, I’m going to literally come kick you in the backside.'”

Renee Zellweger and Brother Drew Zellweger
Credit: SGranitz/WireImage

“So he picked up all the tabloids, and we were riding in the car home, and his shoulders were shaking, and I thought, ‘Oh gosh, he’s crying, too.’ And I look over. He’s laughing so hard. He’s laughing! He thought it was the best thing in the world!” Zellweger quipped.

“All the things that they say you say or what you did,” she continued. “So he started reading them out loud in a [ridiculous] voice. And we were both laughing until we were crying. And I’ve always looked at it that way since, and that was years ago, decades ago.”

The Texas native — who is back on the big screen after a hiatus from acting — has credited her family in the past for keeping her grounded.

Her family, along with her two dogs are, “Just little reminders of what’s truly valuable,” she told PEOPLE in September.

Currently single — she was last linked to musician Doyle Bramhall II — Zellweger has learned that love “kind of stays,” she said. “And that over time, even when you think it’s gone, reflecting on it, it’s still very much there. It’s kind of great, actually.”

Eddie Murhphy, Jennifer Lopez, and Renee Zellweger in Vanity Fair
Credit: Ethan James Green/Vanity Fair

Recently, Zellweger has been making headlines for her starring role in the Judy Garland biopic, Judy, which earned her a Golden Globe best actress win earlier this month, as well as an Oscar nomination on Monday morning.

Zellweger is also up for a SAG award for her performance in the film.