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Lady Bird (2017) Poster

(2017)

Trivia

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Saoirse Ronan had done some stage work prior to filming the movie, and the heavy make-up combined with hot stage lights had caused some spontaneous eruptions of acne. Rather than covering it up, the make-up artist and Ronan convinced director Greta Gerwig to leave it visible, to differentiate the movie from most other coming-of-age dramas full of teenagers with perfect skin. Gerwig concurred.
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Saoirse Ronan has said that the most difficult word for her to pronounce with an American accent was "perfect."
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According to director Greta Gerwig, the first draft of her script was 350 pages long, which would equate to a movie nearly six hours long.
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Saoirse Ronan and Greta Gerwig first met each other at the Toronto Film Festival in 2015 when Ronan was promoting Brooklyn (2015) and Gerwig was promoting Maggie's Plan (2015). Ronan had already read Gerwig's script and instantly connected with the titular character, so when both women discussed the script at length in Ronan's hotel room and she read the key part aloud, Gerwig knew that she had found her "Lady Bird."
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Greta Gerwig has said that she herself was the polar opposite of her lead character "Lady Bird" when she was growing up. She was strait-laced and not at all rebellious.
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The film is Greta Gerwig's solo feature directorial debut.
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The lead character is named Christine after director Greta Gerwig's mother, Christine Gerwig. In addition, the mother in the film, Marion (played by Laurie Metcalf), is a nurse, just as Christine is in real life.
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Noah Baumbach offered to direct the movie but Greta Gerwig refused-- she had written a script and when she showed an early version to Baumbach, he offered to direct it. He also asked if he could help her finish writing it. Gerwig said he "wanted to absorb it." She thought about it for two weeks and then declined, having decided to direct it herself.
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Saoirse Ronan drew some "inspiration" for her American high school scenes from her memories of watching Saved by the Bell (1989) as a young girl.
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The popularity of the film spawned both walking and running tours of the Sacramento locations showcased in the film.
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Director Greta Gerwig said in an interview that she would have preferred the film to be "just close-ups of Saoirse Ronan's face" because of her immense beauty.
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Greta Gerwig encouraged the actors to keep secrets about their characters from her.
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This was the highest-grossing film of the production company A24, as of December 2017.
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After the movie came out, billboard ads were put up in Sacramento congratulating director Greta Gerwig on her Golden Globe wins, with the hashtag "#SacramentoProud."
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Lady Bird (2017) temporarily broke the record held by Toy Story 2 (1999) (163 reviews, all "fresh") of the best-reviewed movie of all time on Rotten Tomatoes, with 196 "fresh" reviews in a row. However, it ended up getting its first "rotten" review after counting 197, therefore no longer holding a perfect score. It maintains a 100% rating for Top Critics.
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The fact that Christine (Saoirse Ronan) and best friend Julie (Beanie Feldstein) wear the same color of nail polish is pure coincidence. Then, since there was a considerable degree of improvisational latitude allowed for character development on-set, a decision was made to have them wear the same polish color for the entire film.
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The film takes place from 2002 to 2003, the time when Greta Gerwig herself graduated from St. Francis Catholic High School in her hometown of Sacramento, California. Gerwig wanted to avoid making a contemporary movie, as she didn't feel confident to tell a story revolving around teenagers who are obsessed with their smart phones.
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Nearly all of the songs sung in the audition scene were written by Stephen Sondheim, who also composed the musical they end up performing, "Merrily We Roll Along." The audition songs include "Being Alive" from "Company," "Everybody Says Don't" from "Anyone Can Whistle," and "Giants in the Sky" from "Into the Woods."
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Due to the regularity of Greta Gerwig's on-set daily consumption of Diet Coke and Cheetos, the crew nicknamed her junk food combo "The Greta."
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The film cast includes four Oscar nominees: Saoirse Ronan, Laurie Metcalf, Lucas Hedges and Timothée Chalamet. Both Ronan and Metcalf were nominated for their roles in this film and Chalamet was nominated in the same year, but for a different film, Call Me By Your Name (2017).
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The working title for the film was "Mothers and Daughters."
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Greta Gerwig chose her DP Sam Levy based on her pleasant collaborative work experiences with him as an actress in Frances Ha (2012), Maggie's Plan (2015) and Mistress America (2015).
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Opened the Special Presentations section at the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival where it received a rapturous standing ovation after its premiere.
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Greta Gerwig wanted to shoot the movie on Super 16 film stock, but due to budget constraints ultimately shot on digital with the Arri Alexa Mini. The final film emphasizes digital noise to create the effect of a Xeroxed copy of a photograph.
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On the commentary track, Greta Gerwig says that Saoirse Ronan grew up Irish Catholic and Beanie Feldstein grew up American and Jewish, so Ronan taught Feldstein the Catholic prayers they have to recite in the film, while Feldstein taught Ronan the Pledge of Allegiance (which Ronan had never heard of before).
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After the school production of "Merrily We Roll Along" opens, Father Leviatch (Stephen McKinley Henderson) dejectedly laments that the audience "didn't get it." While this is part of Father Leviatch's storyline (it develops that he is clinically depressed), it is also a reference to the show's initial reception. Although "Merrily We Roll Along" is now considered a classic of American musical theater and the source of several of Stephen Sondheim's most beloved songs (including "Old Friends" and "Not a Day Goes By") the original Broadway production was ravaged by critics (in the New York Times, Frank Rich called the show "a shambles" and a waste of Sondheim's talent) and it closed after only 16 performances.
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Director Greta Gerwig's script was first greenlit by Scott Rudin after an eleven-hour deliberation with his producing partner Eli Bush.
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Lucas Hedges and Saoirse Ronan previously appeared in The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014), though they did not share any scenes.
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Lady Bird was chosen by the National Board of Review, the American Film Institute, and Time as one of the top 10 films of the year. At the 90th Academy Awards, it earned five nominations: Best Picture, Best Actress for Ronan, Best Supporting Actress for Metcalf, Best Original Screenplay, and Best Director. At the 75th Golden Globe Awards, Lady Bird won for Best Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy and Best Actress - Motion Picture Musical or Comedy (Ronan), and was nominated for two more. It was nominated for three British Academy Film Awards.
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During a November 2017 interview on the NPR program "Fresh Air with Terry Gross," Gross asked Greta Gerwig why she chose the nickname "Lady Bird" for her main character (and therefore as the title of her movie) when most Americans (Gross included) were likely to then assume that the movie was about Claudia "Lady Bird" Johnson, the wife of President Lyndon Johnson. Gerwig responded that the Johnson connection didn't occur to her while she was writing the screenplay, though she did admit that she later realized it was a source of confusion for many viewers, especially in Texas (where the Johnsons were from). Gerwig told Gross that she wasn't altogether sure where the name "Lady Bird" came from and that it was "one of the things that's so mysterious about writing," but that after she had written the script, she remembered a Mother Goose nursery rhyme, "Ladybird, ladybird / Fly away home / Your house is on fire / And your children all gone." Gerwig speculated that the poem "had lodged itself somewhere in my brain."
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This film's five Oscar nominations all have a female nominee: Greta Gerwig for Director and Original Screenplay, Saoirse Ronan for Lead Actress, Laurie Metcalf for Supporting Actress and co-producer Evelyn O'Neill for Picture.
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To prepare the cast and crew, Gerwig gave them her old high-school yearbooks, photos, and journals, as well as passages written by Joan Didion, and took them on a tour of her hometown.
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Throughout the film, a small poster of the movie Rushmore (1998) can be seen on the wall of Lady Bird's bedroom. Saoirse Ronan, who played Lady Bird, worked with that movie's director, Wes Anderson, on The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014) and co-star Lucas Hedges appeared in Anderson's films Moonrise Kingdom (2012) and The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014). Anderson also co-wrote the movies The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (2004) and Fantastic Mr. Fox (2009) with Noah Baumbach, who is the current romantic partner of Greta Gerwig, this movie's writer and director.
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This film shares a lot of cast members with other 2018 Oscar nominated films: Timothee Chalamet is also in 'Call Me By Your Name', Kathryn Newton & Lucas Hedges are both in 'Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri', Tracy Letts is in 'The Post' and Saoirse Ronan voices a character in the animated film 'Loving Vincent'.
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The name "Lady Bird" is by far best known in American cultural history as the nickname of Claudia Alta Taylor Johnson, the wife of the 36th United States President, Lyndon Baines Johnson (LBJ). This movie has nothing to do with President Johnson or "Lady Bird" Johnson. However, it was coincidentally released in U.S. theaters the same weekend as Rob Reiner's biopic LBJ (2016).
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Lady Bird has pictures of Bikini Kill and Sleater-Kinney on her wall which happen to be punk rock girl bands from the Riot Grrrl movement that initiated in the early 90s. Coincidentially, Greta Gerwig has worked with Kathleen Hanna, who is considered the pioneer of the Riot Grrrl movement, in the film "Maggie's Plan" where Kathleen makes a cameo appearance.
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Due to speculation by many fans of the film, Timothée Chalamet, who played Kyle, made it clear on an appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon (2014) that he is "nothing like his character" in Lady Bird (2017).
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Director Greta Gerwig finished writing the script at the end of 2013.
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Lucas Hedges and Stephen Henderson previously appeared in Manchester by the Sea (2016).
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A24 is best known for their films Lady Bird, The Florida Project, The Disaster Artist, The Lobster, The Witch, and Ex Machina. A24 won its first Academy Award for Best Picture for Moonlight. 
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The "Kings Forever 1985" mural that is part of a montage involving Lady Bird driving through Sacramento near the end of the film has two meanings. One of them is that the Sacramento Kings did arrive in town in 1985, having moved from Kansas City. The other is that it looked like the NBA would approve the Kings to be moved from Sacramento to Seattle only a few years before this film was made, but instead the team found new ownership and built a modern new basketball arena (Golden 1 Arena) and are going to be in Sacramento for the foreseeable future.
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Sacramento's "Club Raven" bar (briefly captured on screen) created the "Lady Bird" cocktail consisting of Tahoe Blue vodka, blackberry Torani, house-made sweet and sour and a splash of soda.
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Lady Bird (2017) premiered at the 2017 Telluride Film Festival.
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This was the second movie in which Saoirse Ronan had played a character who insists on using a name other than their given one ("Lady Bird" instead of Christine). The first was How I Live Now (2013). ("Daisy" instead of Elizabeth)
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Like her film's protagonist, director Greta Gerwig attended Catholic school in Sacramento, and drew from that experience in writing Saoirse Ronan's character.
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While with Kyle, Ladybird develops a nosebleed. Kyle is played by Timotheé Chalamet who was nominated for best actor for Call Me by Your Name. In Call Me by Your Name, Timotheé Chalamet's character also suffers from nose bleeds.
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On the lady bird's room a quote of Leo Tolstoy can be seen: "Boredom: The Desire of Desires".
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This film is Gerwig's first as a solo director: in 2008, she co-directed Nights and Weekends with Joe Swanberg.
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Laurie Metcalf and Tracy Letts are both members of the Steppenwolf Theatre Company in Chicago, Illinois. Laurie Metcalf is one of the founding members.
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The movie features the song "As We Go Along" by The Monkees, which was recorded for their 1968 cult classic "Head." Written by Carole King and Toni Stern, it was recorded in Hollywood at Wally Heider's on May 30 and Original Sound on August 1, 1968. Micky Dolenz sang the lead vocal and regularly performed the song as he continued to tour. Neil Young is also featured on the song playing lead guitar.
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Lady Bird was nominated for five Academy Awards.
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Laurie Metcalf and Lois Smith both appeared in Desperate Housewives but did not share any scenes.
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In 2015, Gerwig and her team secured financing from IAC Films, who produced the film alongside Scott Rudin Productions. Gerwig's manager Evelyn O'Neill also served as a producer.
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MPAA Number # 51180.
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During the Christmas scene of opening gifts, the music on the piano behind Laurie Metcalf is the vocal selections from the film version of "Guys and Dolls" with music and lyrics by Frank Loesser.
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French visa # 148302.
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Spoilers 

The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

Although it is never stated which New York college Lady Bird was accepted to, it's clear when she gets off the subway at West 4th Street that it is NYU.
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In the film, Lady Bird applies to Columbia University and later learns she was not accepted. Timothée Chalamet, who played Kyle in the film, actually went to Columbia University for one year before deciding to drop out and focus on acting.
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