From Belle to Rey to Wonder Woman, 2017 was a banner year for female heroes in mainstream Hollywood blockbusters. Sadly, most of the year’s major animated films didn’t exactly follow suit. With the exception of Cars 3‘s Cruz Ramirez, male heroes drove most of the antics in cartoons like The Boss Baby, The Lego Batman Movie, and even Coco. If you’re looking for an animated heroine on par with Diana — minus her Lasso of Truth and bullet-catching bracelets — look no further than The Breadwinner, the latest release from the internationally focused family friendly distributor Gkids and a dark-horse Oscar contender for the Best Animated Feature statue at this year’s Oscars. (The film is already vying for a Golden Globe this weekend.)
Directed by Nora Twomey and produced by Angelina Jolie, The Breadwinner tells the story of a young Afghan girl named Parvana, who defies the restrictive Taliban regime to support her family after her father is imprisoned. It may sound like challenging subject matter, but Jolie believes that Parvana’s heroism will resonate with audiences her age. “I hope this film does speak to young girls around the world, and young boys,” the Oscar-winning actress-turned-director remarks in this new interview clip exclusively premiering on Yahoo Entertainment.
Jolie has witnessed the film’s impact on children first hand, having previewed it for a group of young viewers and taken note of their reactions. “The first time a child is exposed to this kind of life… it moves them to want to value their education and their opportunity. It awakens a sense of that fight for human rights in young people.” Who knows? Maybe The Breadwinner could be the origin story for a new generation of real-life heroes.
The Breadwinner is currently playing in theaters. Watch the trailer:
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