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North Country (2005) Poster

(2005)

Trivia

All of the harassment depicted in the movie really happened to various women. Two women were trapped in porta-potties that were tipped while they were inside. Miners ejaculated onto female miner's clothes in lockers three times. Many more incidents of harassment occurred than could be shown in a 2-hour movie.
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Some of the women standing up in the last courtroom scene were real plaintiffs.
Josey Aimes is based on Lois Jenson, who started working in the mines in 1975 and endured 13 years of harassment before filing her first lawsuit. Jenson v. Eveleth Mines was settled in 1998, 10 years after it was first filed and over 20 years after the harassment began.
When Michelle Monaghan is trapped in portable outhouse by her male co-workers, who rock it and tip it over, the human waste was made of Gatorade, Coco Puffs, and pumpkin pie filling.
According to the book Class Action, the rape that produced Lois Jenson's son occurred after high school. In real life, Jenson put her daughter up for adoption as a toddler because she was overwhelmed trying to raise two children on her own, in low paying jobs. Her father supported her decision to work in the mine because he thought it would help her provide for her son.
In real life there were multiple trials, not just the one depicted in the movie. In the first trial, Jenson and two other women petitioned to have the lawsuit designated a class action, on behalf of all women working in the mines. The judge certified a class action including only the hourly female mine workers, not the salaried female officer workers who were also sexually harassed. The second trial established that sexual harassment occurred and that the company was liable for it. The third trial was to determine the amount of monetary damages each woman suffered. The fourth trial, in the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals, reversed the award of damages. The company settled just before the fifth trial started, paying each plaintiff an average of $233,000. By the time Jenson received compensation from the company in 1999, her children were grown and she was too disabled to work.
The actors relied on locals to perfect their accents. Instead of a dialect coach, they would go to local bars.
Because the union meeting crowd's heckling was unscripted, it took Richard Jenkins almost five minutes to quiet them. Charlize Theron was so uncomfortable during this scene, she broke out in hives.
Glory is based on Pat Kosmach, a divorced mother of 5 who went to work in the mines to support her children. She died of Lou Gehrig's disease before the case was settled.
The scene at the union meeting was filled with 400 real miners from the Iron Range.
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Filming conditions were less than cozy. Minnesota's temperatures rarely rose above freezing.
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Actor Bill Nighy stated during a Q&A session at the British Film Institute in London in 2010 that in his opinion he regards Richard Jenkins' performance in this film as one of the finest in motion picture history.
The interior shots of the mine were filmed in Silver City, New Mexico, in an actual mine.
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During the barroom fight scene,Woody Harrelson swings at Chris Mulkey and actually (accidentally) breaks his nose. This is probably why there is no shot of Mulkey's face at the end of the sequence.
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The film cast includes three Oscar winners: Charlize Theron, Sissy Spacek and Frances McDormand; and three Oscar nominees: Jeremy Renner, Woody Harrelson and Richard Jenkins.
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Sean Bean knows what the mining business is like. His father was a steel worker in Sheffield, England.
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The two women featured on the stand in the court scene worked at EVTAC mine and were part of the class-action suit.
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Charlize Theron spent time at the homes of some of the female miners to get to know them personally. "I spent as much time as I possibly could with the women. They don't wallow in self pity, they're survivors."
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Writer Michael Seitzman didn't want any of the harassment or brutality to be fabricated. "If it happens on screen, then it had to have happened to someone in real life."
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Woody Harrelson had major trouble trying to act like a hockey legend. For starters, he couldn't skate. "That was the most pressure I'd ever felt. It took everything I could just to stand up."
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Woody Harrelson wanted to be in the film because he loved the theme of the movie. "It's kind of the little people against the machine."
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Charlize Theron wanted to react to the crowd in the union meeting without rehearsal so it would feel authentic. "That was, I think in my entire career, the most devastating thing I've ever encountered."
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Niki Caro emailed Frances McDormand a photo of Glory's truck to get her to join the movie. McDormand was sold. She emailed back, "Men may come and go, but that's a really big truck."
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Niki Caro flew from New Zealand to New Jersey to meet Bob Dylan and discuss the movie. Dylan wrote the song, "Tell Ol' Bill," just for the movie.
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As a native of Africa and resident of California, Charlize Theron didn't have much experience with cold weather.
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After playing the villain in movies like GoldenEye (1995), Sean Bean was happy to play a good guy. "It gave me the chance to sort of play a character with some sensitivity and compassion."
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James Cada (Don Pearson) was also in Drop Dead Gorgeous (1999), another movie filmed in Minnesota.
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Charlize Theron actually grew up in a similar blue-collar community in South Africa. "I know that world."
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After Play It to the Bone (1999), Woody Harrelson avoided major roles for almost five years. He credits this as one of the movies that re-energized his career.
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Spoilers 

The trivia item below may give away important plot points.

Sean Bean does not die in this movie

See also

Goofs | Crazy Credits | Quotes | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

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