Narrated by Jodie Foster, Be Natural: The Untold Story of Alice Guy-Blaché is an astounding documentary about the first female filmmaker, who achieved heights of fame and financial success before she was shut out from the very industry she helped create.
“A timely contribution to the conversation about the challenges facing women filmmakers.” – Leslie Felperin, Hollywood Reporter
Guy-Blaché began her career as secretary to Léon Gaumont and in 1896, at 23, was inspired to make her own film called La Fée aux Choux (The Cabbage Fairy), one of the first narrative films ever made. Over the span of her career, she wrote, produced or directed 1,000 films, including 150 with synchronized sound during the ‘silent’ era. Her work includes comedies, westerns and dramas, as well as films with groundbreaking subject matter such as child abuse, immigration, Planned Parenthood, and female empowerment. After a decade of making films at Gaumont she had a second decade-long career in the U.S., where she built and ran her own studio in Fort Lee, New Jersey. Yet she is virtually unknown today. Why? Director Pamela B. Green dedicated more than eight years of research in order to uncover the real story of Alice Guy-Blaché (1873-1968)—highlighting not only her pioneering contributions to the birth of cinema but also her acclaim as a creative force and entrepreneur in the earliest years of movie-making. (Dir. by Pamela B. Green, 2019, USA, 103 mins., Not Rated)