Phyllida Lloyd: First of all it's not a biopic. It's all told from her point of view. We're experiencing how did it feel to be there not objectively, but how did it feel to be the first female leader of the western world coming from a very lower class background coming into this world of privileged, entitled men. It's how does it feel to walk into a room of men who all fought in the Second World War to be the person who is in fact in charge of a war knowing that all the men are looking at you. Of course she's not had any experience with this so we're trying to put ourselves in her shoes using our own experience of the workplace.
WaH: I read that you said that this movie could only have been made by a female team.
PL: Not that it could only have been made by women but I think it is a personal project for all three of us. The kinds of themes in the film that we identify with in terms of being a woman in largely male dominated world. Abi's screenplay takes a very particular look at -- she's very interested in details, fragments and there are a lot of details in the film that we see and feel that perhaps are not the obvious territory for a film about a politician. But because we notice little things that to us are significant. That's all to do with the fact that it's a film about memory and I think it's definitely three women's idea of a woman's journey. Do you agree Abi?
Abi Morgan- Yes very much so. Also because it's a film about memory, it's about a woman who is being hijacked by memories so that way we can come in very left of field again through the details through the random moment that you remember. So you may remember what you were eating but you don't necessarily remember the nature of the conversation but you remember that there was a sort of atmosphere when you were eating and we kind of went in in that way.
Most of this review was written after screening the film at the Toronto Film Festival. It has been augmented.
Women and Hollywood: Why did you start the movie off with the Audre Lorde quote?
Dee Rees: I started the movie when I was going through my own coming out process. I was reading a lot of Audre Lorde and listening to Nina Simone, but Audre Lorde was who I latched on to and followed her life journey. I could really relate to her experiences about fitting in and always being the “other.” The quote: “Wherever the bird with no feet flew, she found trees with no limbs.” For me, that means she has no place and there is no place for her and that’s how I interpret it. And that’s why I wanted to start the film with that because that’s what Alike’s journey is about. She feels like she doesn’t have a place.
WaH: You started the film as a short and then it progressed to a feature. Did you know you always wanted it to be a feature film?
DR: We actually wrote it as a feature, first. Then we took an excerpt and shot it as a short.
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