Jada Pinkett Smith, Candice Bergen - The Women Interviews
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What are some of the issues that you guys explore in the film?
Jada Pinkett-Smith: "Just basically friendship and betrayal and forgiveness. Those are some of the ideas."
What's the importance of having a film out there for women?
Jada Pinkett-Smith: "Right now, you know, in a time in Hollywood where studios aren't really investing in movies starring women, this is a really strong statement. It was directed by a female and it's an all-female cast so we're, basically, we're going to prove to Hollywood that women can open movies."
Getting to play Meg Ryan's mother again?
Candice Bergen: "I know. I know 70 years later. Well it was great playing her mother the first time and it's great now. She's so talented."
This is an all female cast. How tough was that to sell to a production company, that you're not going to have men in the movie and it is a female target audience?
Diane English: "Well it took 14 years to get the movie made so I think that answers your question – really, really hard. And ironically in 1939 it wasn't hard at all. There was no issue with it, and yet nearly 70 years later it's a big issue."
But now, especially with the success of Sex and the City, do you think women are turning out more to buy tickets? Is that what's happening?
Diane English: "Well, you know, I would go in with my laundry list of films that made huge amounts of money that were targeted toward women and had female ensembles – from Nine to Five, First Wives Club, Waiting to Exhale, The Hours, Fried Green Tomatoes, Steel Magnolia, a long list – and yet you always have to start over again. They always say, 'Well, that was a fluke for this reason or that reason.' But we've had three in a row now, we've had Sex and the City,Mamma Mia!, and Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2, and hopefully we will button it up so I think that might actually change perception."
Why did you stick with it so long?
Diane English: "Because people told me it couldn't be done and that's my particular neurosis. "
It's not the same tone as the original movie. The original movie was a little more snarkier, a little meaner than this is. Why did you decide to go this direction where it's more about the women bonding and less about the men bashing?
Diane English: "Because I think that we've really changed over 70 years. I don't think that we try to undercut ourselves and each other the way we were taught to do in that era. And now we really link arms and go into the world together. Men come and go – get yourself some girlfriends."
How was it having Meg Ryan play your mom?
India Ennenga: "Great. It's really fun. A lot of people tell me I really look like her. "
How easy was it to bond with her and did you guys do things off the set that really helped?
India Ennenga: "She was really great about finding me when we were off set and trying to bond with me. And she acted like a mother to me off set as well as on, so it was very easy. She made it really easy."
How did she act like a mother to you off the set?
India Ennenga: "She liked to talk to me when we were hanging out, just waiting around. She would talk to me the whole time. She asked me a lot about myself and we really got to know each other."
What was it like working with this fabulous group of women?
Natasha Alam: "It was unbelievable. I felt like I hit the jackpot because everyone was there. And it's like you could do 10 movies and meet one at the time. But this was like there you go, they're all there. "