Starring: Emma Stone, Steve Carell, Andrea Riseborough, Sarah Silverman, Bill Pullman, Alan Cumming, Elisabeth Shue
Story: Bio-comedy sports drama directed by Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris, in which the plot is loosely based on the 1973 tennis match between Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs.
The electrifying 1973 tennis match between World number one Billie Jean King (Emma Stone) and ex-champ and serial hustler Bobby Riggs (Steve Carell) was billed as The Battle of the Sexes and became one of the most watched televised sports events of all time. Trapped in the media glare, King and Riggs were on opposite sides of a binary argument, but off-court each was fighting more personal and complex battles.
With a supportive husband urging her to fight the Establishment for equal pay, the fiercely private King was also struggling to come to terms with her own sexuality, while Riggs gambled his legacy and reputation in a bid to relive the glories of his past. Together, Billie and Bobby served up a cultural spectacle that resonated far beyond the tennis courts.
Best Quotes from Trailer:
[at a Gambler’s Anonymous meeting]
Gambler’s Anonymous: Would anyone else like to share? How about you in the back with the glasses, sir? Yes, you, sir.
Bobby Riggs: My name is Bobby and I am an addict.
Gamblers: Hi, Bobby.
Bobby Riggs: You know, you folks aren’t here because you’re gamblers. You are here because you are terrible gamblers.
Gambler’s Anonymous: Okay, Bobby.
Bobby Riggs: These folks don’t need to stop doing what they’re doing, they just need to get better at it.
Gambler’s Anonymous: Okay. Alright, please.
[he throws a pack of cards on the table]
Bobby Riggs: Who’s dealing? Who’s in?
[answering the phone]
Billie Jean King: Hello?
Bobby Riggs: Eureka, Billie Jean! It’s Bobby. Bobby Riggs.
Billie Jean King: Bobby? How did you get my number?
Bobby Riggs: I called every hotel in the city. Listen, I have a great idea.
Billie Jean King: Okay. Well, it’s after midnight, Bobby, so can we talk another time?
Bobby Riggs: You and me, Billie Jean. Three sets, five sets, your choice.
Billie Jean King: Are you drunk, Bobby?
Bobby Riggs: No, of course not! How about this: man versus woman? Male chauvinist pig versus hairy legged feminist. No offense. You’re still a feminist, right?
Billie Jean King: No, I’m a tennis player who happens to be a woman.
Bobby Riggs: That’s right. That’s exactly who you are, and I am a tennis player who happens to be a man, who says that he can beat any woman on the planet. Think of the publicity that we’d get. Think of the money.
Billie Jean King: No.
Bobby Riggs: Thirty-five grand.
Billie Jean King: Where did you get that kind of money?
Bobby Riggs: You see. You see. You’re tempted.
Billie Jean King: I’m really not. I’m not interested, Bobby. Goodnight.
Bobby Riggs: Don’t hang up! Don’t hang up!
Billie Jean King: And by the way, I shave my legs.
Radio Host: The word is you are renegade.
Billie Jean King: Women should be paid and respected equally.
Marilyn Barnett: [to Billie] I admire what you guys are doing.
Billie Jean King: The press release.
Jack Kramer: Oh, yes.
Billie Jean King: It says here you’re offering the men’s winner twelve thousand dollars and one thousand five hundred to the women’s.
Jack Kramer: Those are the terms.
Bob Sanders: The men’s prize needs to be that high to attract the best players. We’re trying to make this the most prestigious tournament in America.
Gladys Heldman: And paying the women less than ever makes it more prestigious? Uh…
Jack Kramer: It’s just simply a question of what we can afford.
Bob Sanders: People pay to see the men play. They’re the draw.
Billie Jean King: They’re eight times more of a draw?
Bob Sanders: Sorry?
Billie Jean King: You’re offering the men’s winner exactly eight times what you’re offering the women’s winner. Do we bring in any of the crowd?
Bob Sanders: I don’t know the percentages, but…
Billie Jean King: Well they sold the exact same amount of tickets to the women’s final today as well as the men’s. Isn’t that right, Jack?
Jack Kramer: Today, yeah, I suppose so.
Gladys Heldman: Same sale, same prize money makes sense to me.
Jack Kramer: Oh, come on, be reasonable. I mean there’s no way that we could afford that.
Billie Jean King: What’s your argument, Jack?
Jack Kramer: Well for one thing the men have families that they have to support.
Billie Jean King: Well I’m the main breadwinner in my family.
Jack Kramer: Yeah. Yeah. Look, the men are simply more exciting to watch. They are, they’re faster.
Bob Sanders: Fact.
Jack Kramer: And they’re stronger.
Bob Sanders: Fact.
Jack Kramer: And they’re more competitive.
Bob Sanders: Just fact.
Jack Kramer: It’s not your fault. It’s just biology.
Billie Jean King: That’s not my point. We sell the same amount of tickets
Jack Kramer: I’m sorry, it’s not going to happen.
Gladys Heldman: There isn’t a single thing I don’t hate about Bobby Riggs.
[as Riggs is being interviewed]
Bobby Riggs: I am not saying that women don’t belong on the court. Who would pick up the balls otherwise?
Billie Jean King: Oh, my God.
Bobby Riggs: You know what I’m doing, I’m cooking. I’m cooking!
Bobby Riggs: I won the triple at Wimbledon. I could beat Billie Jean King. Does she have the nerve?
Bobby Riggs: A hundred thousand dollars to any woman who can beat Bobby Riggs. Is she out there and does she have the nerve?
Billie Jean King: Call Bobby, tell him it’s on.
Marilyn Barnett: So, Billie Jean, what do you want?
Billie Jean King: I’m going to be the best, that way I can really change things.
Billie Jean King: Whatever I may feel I can’t act on it. There’s too much at stake.
[at the press conference]
Bobby Riggs: Now, don’t get me wrong, I love women, in the bedroom and in the kitchen.
Billie Jean King: Keep talking, Bobby. The more nonsense you spout the worse it’s going to be when you lose. Just keep talking.
Bobby Riggs: Ladies and gentlemen, I’m going to put the show back into chauvinist.
Billie Jean King: Bobby’s a clown. This whole thing is an act for him.
Jack Kramer: Business, sports, you name it, at the very top it’s a man’s world.
Billie Jean King: [to Kramer] When we dare to want a little bit more, just a little bit of what you got, that’s what you can’t stand.
Billie Jean King: If I can’t beat Bobby Riggs he’s never going to let it go.
Sports Reporter: Forty million people watching, any last words?
Billie Jean King: I’m done talking. Let’s play.
Battle of the Sexes is set to open in the US September 22, 2017 and UK October 20, 2017.