LILLY is the heart-rending, dramatic feature true story of Lilly Ledbetter, the Alabama woman whose lawsuit against her employer Goodyear Tire became the foundation for the 2009 Fair Pay Act, which was named for her and was the first piece of legislation signed into law by President Barack Obama.
Born into deep poverty in rural Alabama, Lilly Ledbetter succeeds in what is traditionally considered a man’s job, working as the only woman supervisor at the Alabama Goodyear Tire plant. Despite sexual harassment, and toxic mistreatment and violence over nearly 20 years, she perseveres – until she learns that she’s been earning only half as much as her male peers. Her complaints are repeatedly dismissed, until her co-workers – even the women – turn on her for making waves and she is she is eventually forced to retire. Her cause is then taken up by a sympathetic local attorney, and their winding search for justice, first to a win and a judgement of more than $3 million dollars, then an overturn on appeal, eventually takes them – and her case – all the way up to the Supreme Court. She loses in court based on a deficiency in the law that makes it all but impossible for women to sue employers for unfair pay, but in a rare vocal dissent from the bench, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg encourages Lilly to take her fight to Congress. She does, eventually ushering the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act through both chambers and to the desk of the 44th President. LILLY tells the timely story behind a major part of the fight for fair pay and against workplace gender discrimination through the emotional and personal battle of one incredible woman.
The film is written and directed by veteran filmmaker Rachel Feldman, a director of network broadcast drama for 25 years. Lilly Ledbetter is an active consultant and partner on the film. Meryl Streep is a personal champion of the project, and she has activated her talent agency CAA to work in concert with the filmmakers. J. Todd Harris of Branded Pictures Entertainment, is producing; he has produced 50 feature films, and recently executive produced Aaron Sorkin’s The Trial of the Chicago 7 in conjunction with Steven Spielberg’s Amblin Entertainment, which premiered on Netflix in Fall 2020. Corstoria is serving as associate producer of LILLY.