Watch the powerful new UK trailer for Suffragette, starring Meryl Streep and Carey Mulligan

Posted by
Harriet Hall

Packed with acting heavyweights including three-time Academy Award winner Meryl Streep, Carey Mullugan and Helena Bonham Carter, and receiving rave reviews after previews this weekend, Suffragette is on everyone’s list as the must-see film of the autumn. Now, a new UK trailer has been released and we are counting the days until the film’s release (only 52 to go…).

The film is considered the first to examine the lives and actions of the suffragettes - members of the 19th and early 20th Century movement who fought for and won the women's right to vote.

Directed by BAFTA Award winner Sarah Gavron and from an original screenplay by Emmy winner Abi Morgan, the trailer shows Carey Mulligan (who plays fictional character Maud) fighting against the patriarchy in a Cockney accent, saying:

“All my life I’ve been respectful, done what men told me…well I can’t have that anymore."

Meryl Streep stars as iconic leader of the British Suffragettes, Emmeline Pankhurst.

Speaking of the film this weekend in the Los Angeles Times, Meryl Streep says she feels great parallels between the history depicted in the film and the myriad social barriers that modern women continue to be faced with:

"Until men look around the table and say, 'You know what's weird? There's only two women here and there's eight men.' When that feels weird to a man, we will have achieved something," Streep says.

"We need half. That's all we ask. Half. In the House. In the Senate. At Universal. At Sony. If it were half, I can't say the world would be better, but it would be representative."

Streep has long advocated for women’s rights, funding a screenwriting group for women over 40, and lobbying Congress to reinstate the Equal Rights Amendment earlier this year. The actor has even called on the pope to place further importance upon women’s issues.

Speaking about the film and the role of Emmeline Pankhurst within women’s history, Streep says:

“She was the perfect person who met her time. She wanted to change things. This was a time when it was hard for women to stand up.”

Emmeline Pankhurst

Emmeline Pankhurst, 1910

The film is also notable for its female director, which remains a difficult role for women in the industry.

"In the director's branch of the academy, there is something wrong that there are so few women,” says Streep.

“It's not like the film schools aren't graduating thousands of young women. They're going to festivals, they're winning prizes, their films are seen and they disappear. So then do our stories. My story is disappearing, and I can't allow it, on behalf of my daughters and also my son."

"It would be an important thing for the film to raise the question of why, why this was so difficult and long a process," Streep says. "What is the nature of this resistance? What is it in the human psyche that wants to reinforce a dominance?"

The film which also stars Anne-Marie Duff, Brendan Gleeson and Ben Whishaw, will open at the BFI film festival on the 12 October.

Images: Rex Features