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

Director:

Nigel Cole

Writer:

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

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sally Hawkins ... Rita O'Grady
Andrea Riseborough ... Brenda
Jaime Winstone ... Sandra
Lorraine Stanley ... Monica
Nicola Duffett ... Eileen
Geraldine James ... Connie
Bob Hoskins ... Albert Passingham
Matthew Aubrey Matthew Aubrey ... Brian (as Matt Aubrey)
Daniel Mays ... Eddie O'Grady
Roger Lloyd Pack ... George (as Roger Lloyd-Pack)
Phil Cornwell ... Dave
Karen Seacombe Karen Seacombe ... Marge
Thomas Arnold Thomas Arnold ... Martin
Sian Scott Sian Scott ... Sharon O'Grady
Robbie Kay ... 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 »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

During the television premiere on 9th March 2013, the BBC experimented with the first ever Twitter-based director's commentary, whereby Nigel Cole and composer David Arnold live-tweeted along with the film. See more »

Goofs

In the shot of the housing blocks, a satellite dish is visible on the roof of one. See more »

Quotes

Eddie O'Grady: Christ, I like a drink, but I ain't out on the beer every night or screwin' other women, or... 'Ere, I've never once raised me hand to you. Ever. Or the kids.
Rita O'Grady: Christ.
Eddie O'Grady: What? Why are you looking like that?
Rita O'Grady: Right. You're a saint now, is that what you're tellin' me, Eddie? You're a bleedin' saint? 'Cause you give us an even break?
Eddie O'Grady: What are you saying?
Rita O'Grady: That is as it should be. Jesus, Eddie! What do you think this strike's all been about, eh? Oh yeah. Actually you're right. You don't go on the drink, do ...
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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 The EE British Academy Film Awards (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Paper Sun
Written by Steve Winwood (as Winwood) / Jim Capaldi (as Capaldi) / Chris Wood (as Wood) / Dave Mason (as Mason)
Performed by Traffic
Published by Universal / Island Music and © 1967 (Renewed) F.S. Music Ltd (PRS)
All Rights On Behalf Of F.S. Music Ltd
Administered By Warner-Tamerlane Publishing Corp.
All Rights Reserved
Courtesy of Universal-Island Records Ltd
Under license from Universal Music Operations Ltd
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User Reviews

 
Girl Power – union style
22 September 2010 | by colin_coyneSee all my reviews

From the director NIGEL COLE (Calendar Girls, Saving Grace), MADE IN DAGENHAM tells the tale of the 187 women that worked at the Ford Motor companies Dagenham factory - and their struggle to earn equal rights and pay with the 55,000 male workers at the factory.

Set in 1968, the economy was used to frequent union uprisings and strikes – but this was the first time that it was the women upholsterers who sewed car seat covers that took the initiative … after being "down-graded" to a non-skilled status – the women rose as one to walk out, in an action that brought them into direct conflict with the management, their own unions and their own husbands … eventually brought the Ford motor company to it's knees

Many laughed at the women's actions … until their strength of feeling … and reality set in … forcing the unions and the management to take increasingly desperate measures to get the women back to work … as factory production ground to a halt.

Rita O'Grady (played admirably by SALLY HAWKINS), a shy, pleasant worker working in sweat shop conditions, found her voice when asked to stand up for the women's views, and gradually became more and more empowered as the rest of the women stood behind her in a crusade that became synonymous with equal rights

The story climax's nicely in an emotional showdown, as the situation finally comes to a head and the chief participants (Ford, the Government, the Women, the unions and the men workers) all realise that things have gone too far … and none of them can back down.

As well as Sally Hawkins, there are some strong performances by other members of the cast – specifically, Bob Hoskins as Albert, Miranda Richardson as an exuberant Barbra Castle, the lovely Rosamund Pike as Lisa, Geraldine James as Connie, Kenneth Cranham as Monty (Unions) and Richard Schiff as Robert Tooley (Ford).

The music, costumes and the locations set up the tone of the times nicely, and the direction is solid throughout. The camera work is able, and is interspersed with footage from the actual era giving it more gravitas.

In a phrase, it's … "Girl Power – union style"


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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 September 2010 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Made in Dagenham See more »

Filming Locations:

Dagenham, Essex, England, UK See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$7,200,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$37,563, 21 November 2010

Gross USA:

$1,095,369

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$12,629,471
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color | Black and White (television footage)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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