It's always good news when a woman whose contributions to our culture have receded from contemporary knowledge gets brought back into mainstream culture.
Producers Julie Pacino and Jennifer DeLia through their company Poverty Row Entertainment are going to put Mary Pickford back front and center. They have acquired the rights to the biography Pickford: The Woman Who Made Hollywood by Eileen Whitfield and are hoping to get it in front of the camera in 2013. She is a very important woman in Hollywood history, was one of the founders of the Academy and of United Artists. Jennifer DeLia will direct the film. She recently directed Billy Bates which had a special screening at the Tribeca Film Festival.
Here are some thoughts from the producers as to why they want to make this movie:
Mary Pickford's story feels so incredibly important and relevant for many reasons. Pickford was truly a phenomenon during her time, being the first icon of Hollywood and the first actor to be beloved and adored while she was also the first star to appeal to such a wide audience. Considering where society was at with women's rights 100 years ago in 1912, Pickford was far ahead of her time. She was very intuitive and a visionary, who fought for what she believed in – a notion completely unheard of then especially from a woman in business. Pickford was an incredible pioneer having the foresight and the ability to implement with her partners such grand ideas as United Artists and the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences.
Additionally, Pickford and her peers cultivated the concept of Hollywood and celebrity almost a century ago. It's fascinating to think about how that that has led to where we are now, specifically with regard to reality TV and social media. I want people to realize Pickford's place in Hollywood history because without a true understanding of her role it is like being involved in a religion but not understanding its foundation.
And with today's reliance on special effects and big budget films, as filmmakers we find it incredibly profound to go back to the beginning of cinema and to explore the world through Mary's eyes as she truly honed the craft of acting. On the flip side Mary's mesmerizing personal dramas and love stories are all so complex and rich and human. Mary Pickford's story feels timeless, yet still perfectly in sync with the today's reality. We hope her story will inspire people today, both men and women. "
Read more about her here in a recent post on the trouble between the Mary Pickford Foundation and the Mary PIckford Insitute.