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Made in Dagenham (2010)

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A dramatization of the 1968 strike at the Ford Dagenham car plant, where female workers walked out in protest against sexual discrimination.

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Nominated for 3 BAFTA Film Awards. Another 3 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Lorraine Stanley ...
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Eileen
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Matthew Aubrey ...
Brian (as Matt Aubrey)
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George (as Roger Lloyd-Pack)
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Dave
Karen Seacombe ...
Marge
Thomas Arnold ...
Martin
Sian Scott ...
Sharon O'Grady
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Graham O'Grady
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Storyline

In 1968, the Ford auto factory in Dagenham was one of the largest single private employers in the United Kingdom. In addition to the thousands of male employees, there are also 187 underpaid women machinists who primarily assemble the car seat upholstery in poor working conditions. Dissatisfied, the women, represented by the shop steward and Rita O'Grady, work with union rep Albert Passingham for a better deal. However, Rita learns that there is a larger issue in this dispute considering that women are paid an appalling fraction of the men's wages for the same work across the board on the sole basis of their sex. Refusing to tolerate this inequality any longer, O'Grady leads a strike by her fellow machinists for equal pay for equal work. What follows would test the patience of all involved in a grinding labour and political struggle that ultimately would advance the cause of women's rights around the world. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (kchishol@rogers.com)

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Dagenham, England, 1968. An ordinary woman fights for equal pay and achieves something extraordinary. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and brief sexuality | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

20 September 2010 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

We Want Sex  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$7,200,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£674,059 (UK) (3 October 2010)

Gross:

$1,094,798 (USA) (10 April 2011)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Was turned into a West End musical in 2014. Gemma Arterton assumed Sally Hawkins's lead role. See more »

Goofs

The Union chiefs announce their loyalty to the Communist Party yet communists were banned from holding office in the TGWU at that time. See more »

Quotes

Rita O'Grady: Bollocks. I'm sorry, but it is. Three hours we've been sat here. That's what matters to the girls? How you're qualified to talk about that, I do not know.
Rita O'Grady: [she pulls out threads of leather] Have a look at this. There. You put them together, go on!
Ford executive: Ford property, I believe?
Rita O'Grady: Oh stop it! We have to pick all these different pieces and work out how they go together. Cause there ain't no template is there? We have to take them all and sow them one by one into the finished article. That is not ...
[...]
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Crazy Credits

Captions in the closing credits: "Two years later in May 1970 the Equal Pay Act became law. Similar legislation quickly followed in most industrial countries across the world. Ford Motor Company Limited went on to effect changes in its employment practices and is now used as an example of a good practice employer." See more »

Connections

Featured in Great Movie Mistakes III: Not in 3D (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

You Can Get It If You Really Want
Written by Jimmy Cliff (as Cliff)
Performed by Desmond Dekker
Published by Universal / Island Music Ltd
Courtesy of Sanctuary Records Group Ltd
Under license from Universal Music Operations Ltd
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User Reviews

 
Gutsiness and heart
13 October 2010 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

After a summer of endless animations and shlock-horror here - at last!

  • is a film with real heart.


Sally Hawkins is a revelation as Rita who becomes the striking machinists' spokeswoman; her speeches to co-workers, union chiefs, management and the press all start out tremulous and gain in confidence as she hits her stride. Geraldine James who usually plays upper-class ladies (I'm still trying to forgive and forget her breast-feeding David Walliams in Little Britain!) here plays a kind of 'upper-working-class' woman with a husband still shell-shocked from WW2. John Sessions does a Spitting Image turn as Harold Wilson, and Miranda Richardson morphs her Blackadder Elizabeth I into a fiery Barbara Castle (dressed by C&A).

In my Gap Year (date withheld) I worked in a Sussex factory that had a sewing-room. The movie gets the atmosphere exactly right but I don't think working women were quite as free with the f-word back then as they are in this script. The end credits run against pictures of the original Dagenham strikers who all look like clones of Corrie's Ena Sharples and Florrie Linley. Some of the film machinists are more Carnaby Street than Coronation Street, but that's OK. These girls make you laugh, they occasionally bring a lump to your throat, but most of all they make you want to cheer.

A small slice of 1960s history, this film packs a big punch. Do not miss it.


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