By now the blowout box office numbers from Freddie Mercury biopic BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY have almost stopped echoing off studio halls, including the Best Actor Oscar memories; yet when was the last time a female performer got an in-depth biopic?
Okay, Joan Jett and Loretta Lynn among others, but even Reese Witherspoon and Beyoncé, who played June Carter Cash and Etta James, respectively, were second fiddle in major male singer portrayals on screen.
So what about a woman who was so tied to a lyric and movement that she changed the world’s mind about women. Enter Helen Reddy, the “I am woman” invincible songbird who blew the patriarchy’s doors off in the 1970’s. I AM WOMAN is just that movie, coming from Quiver Distribution on Sept. 11. (Yes, 9/11.)
Meanwhile, the official word is billing the film as a superstar story: “I Am Woman is the inspiring story of singer Helen Reddy, who wrote and sang the song “I Am Woman” that became the anthem for the women’s movement in the 1970s. The film is a story of fearless ambition and passion, of a woman who smashed through the patriarchal norms of her time to become an international singing superstar.”
However, Helen Reddy is remembered by many as singer of a lyric that many of us sung under our breath when the times were not so friendly to women and girls as they are now, in the corporate world, on the home front, and even in our own families where boys are often considered higher value than girls.
Get a look at this film now that stars Tilda Cobham-Hervey in a look-alike match for the chanteuse, born Helen Maxine Reddy from Melbourne, Australia.
What They Say Officially About I AM WOMAN
In 1966, single-mother Helen Reddy (Tilda Cobham-Hervey) leaves her old life in Australia for New York and stardom, only to find that the industry’s male gatekeepers don’t take her seriously. Helen finds an encouraging friend in legendary rock journalist Lillian Roxon (Danielle Macdonald), who becomes her closest confidant. When ambitious aspiring talent manager Jeff Wald (Evan Peters) sweeps Helen off her feet, everything changes as he becomes both her husband and manager and relocates the family to California. With a strong push from Helen, Jeff secures her a recording contract and subsequent string of hit singles, including the iconic megahit “I Am Woman.” Increased fame leads to added pressures on themselves and their relationship, forcing Helen to find the strength to take control of her own destiny.
Bonus? Notice that the director, producers, and writer are women.
Cast: Tilda Cobham-Hervey, Danielle Macdonald and Evan Peters
Directed by: Unjoo Moon
Written by: Emma Jensen
Produced by: Rosemary Blight and Unjoo Moon
From 1971 to Convince You – Yes, You Are Invincible, PS.