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film criticism by maryann johanson | since 1997

WTF?! UK DVD release of ‘Megan Leavey’ pretends the movie isn’t about Megan Leavey

Perhaps you can imagine my rage when I saw this:


The terrific soldier-and-her-dog movie Megan Leavey, which had a theatrical release in the US last June, is going straight to VOD/DVD in the UK… and the film has been renamed Rex.

That’s right: the female protagonist has been erased, in the film’s UK marketing, in favor of the dog. The tagline on the DVD cover reads:

The true story of a Marine’s best friend.

Spoiler: This movie is NOT about the dog.

But let’s assume some marketing genius decided that animal movies are easier to sell than lady movies. In that case, there should be a honking big banner across this DVD cover that reads “From Gabriela Cowperthwaite, director of the BAFTA-nominated Blackfish.”

(Blackfish is her incredible documentary about captives orcas, which has raised awareness and radically changed the cultural conversation about the issue.)

I wonder why that’s not there…

After the enormous success of Wonder Woman, everyone was all, “Oh, hey, Hollywood won’t be able to pretend movies by and about women aren’t lucrative.” I’ve responded to that with, basically, “Let’s just wait and see.” And here we are.

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