‘Based on a True Story’ Star Chris Messina Recalls When True Crime Collided Into His Own Life: ‘We Found a Hand Washed Up on the Beach’

Playing a man who gets entangled in a murder investigation because his wife (Kaley Cuoco) is obsessed with true crime, “Based on a True Story” kind of hits close to home for Chris Messina. When he was a kid, he and a friend actually may have actually discovered a crime scene.

“I grew up in Northport, Long Island,” Messina told Variety at the Peacock series’ premiere Thursday at the Pacific Design Center in West Hollywood. “I grew up on Makamah Road, about a block from the Long Island Sound. A buddy and I walked to the Sound and – it was very ‘Stand By Me’ – we found a hand that washed up on the beach.”

They immediately called the cops. “We had to report it,” Messina recalled. “I was pretending to be River Phoenix in ‘Stand By Me.’”

Directed by Rob Reiner, “Stand By Me” starred Phoenix, Jerry O’Connell, Corey Feldman and Will Wheaton as a group of boys in 1959 Oregon who try to find the dead body of a missing boy.

In “Based on a True Story,” not only do Cuoco and Messina’s characters get wrapped up in the crime investigation — so does their hot plumber (Tom Bateman).

“What’s the closest I’ve ever been to a crime?” Bateman said. “I guess crimes against fashion? I feel like I’m pretty clean.”

Cuoco said the closest she got to a crime scene was “Vanderpump Rules” #Scandavol. Find out what she said about that here.

“Based on a True Story” was created by Craig Rosenberg (“The Boys”) and is executive produced by director Alexander Buono. The cast also includes Priscilla Quintana, Liana Liberato, Claire Holt, Aaron Staton, Aisha Alfa, Alex Alomar-Akpobome, Belmont Cameli, Brandon Keener, Ever Carradine, Jessica St. Clair, June Diane Raphael, Lizze Broadway, Miles Messenden, Sebastian Quinn and Yvonne Senate Jones.

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