8.0/10
220
10 user 2 critic

Second Serve (1986)

Fact-based story about tennis pro Renee Richards, whose player status was challenged in 1976 when it was revealed that she was a transsexual. Flashback to 1964 and meet Richard Radley, a ... See full summary »

Director:

Anthony Page

Writers:

John Ames (book), Gavin Lambert | 2 more credits »
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Vanessa Redgrave ... Richard Radley / Renee Richards
Martin Balsam ... Dr. Beck
William Russ ... Josh
Alice Krige ... Gwen
Kerrie Keane ... Meriam
Richard Venture Richard Venture ... Dr. David Radley
Reni Santoni ... Dr. Roberto Granato
Louise Fletcher ... Dr. Sadie M. Bishop
Jeff Corey ... Dr. Harry Benjamin
Alan Feinstein ... Bill
Nina van Pallandt ... Danielle (as Nina Van Pallandt)
Michael Cavanaugh ... Gene Scott
Kenneth Tigar ... Ross
Alison La Placa ... Nightclub Singer
Ray Girardin Ray Girardin ... Grigsby
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Storyline

Fact-based story about tennis pro Renee Richards, whose player status was challenged in 1976 when it was revealed that she was a transsexual. Flashback to 1964 and meet Richard Radley, a successful New York doctor with a great lifestyle, a flashy girl friend, and a secret life. Seems like the good doctor likes to dress up in women's clothes and visit Manhattan. His psychiatrist mother refuses to deal with him and sends him to a colleague who diagnoses with a psychotic gender confusion, which he says can be unlearned. After a failed marriage and fatherhood, he gives in to the transsexual operation and becomes Renee for good with a new life in California. Written by John Sacksteder <jsackste@bellsouth.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

He made the most drastic change a man can make. He became a woman. This is his story and hers. See more »

Genres:

Biography | Drama | Sport

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 May 1986 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

I Change My Life See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Lorimar Telepictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film cast includes three Oscar winners: Vanessa Redgrave, Martin Balsam and Louise Fletcher. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Ugly Betty: Brothers (2007) See more »

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User Reviews

 
empowering and dignified
28 November 2003 | by jvframeSee all my reviews

I've just read a local paper bemoaning the fact that very few films or books had been made with tennis as a central theme. I was waiting for the author to mention "Second Serve" - and the fact that he didn't proves that he must not have seen this movie.

It would be fully 15 years since it was shown here on TV, but I remember how superb Vanessa Redgrave is in the lead role (true to form - she is one of my all-time favourite actors).

Since becoming an activist in the local gay community, I have come to know personally several transgenders and to appreciate even more just how honest a representation "Second Serve" makes.

Significantly it is just this month that the Olympics governing body have declared that transgenders will be included in the next Games. I believe that Renee Richards personal strength and public honesty was the first step in achieving this statement of equity.


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