TORONTO – The first “Little Women” trailer had everybody in a tizzy for the March sisters, but according to Meryl Streep, you ain’t seen nothing yet.
“Not to hype it, but ‘Little Women’ is like a masterpiece,” Streep tells USA TODAY while discussing her new movie “The Laundromat” (in select theaters Sept. 27, streaming on Netflix Oct. 18), which premiered at Toronto International Film Festival.
An adaptation of Louisa May Alcott’s classic novel directed by Greta Gerwig (“Lady Bird”), “Little Women” stars Saoirse Ronan, Emma Watson, Florence Pugh and Eliza Scanlen as four siblings coming of age and into their own as young women after the Civil War. The stellar cast for the film (in theaters Dec. 25) also includes Laura Dern, Timothee Chalamet, Tracy Letts and Streep, who plays the sisters’ wealthy and disapproving Aunt March.
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‘Little Women’: The first trailer is here, starring Saoirse Ronan and Meryl Streep
Director Greta Gerwig (left) and Meryl Streep on the set of "Little Women." (Photo: WILSON WEBB)
“It’s the first great, honestly epic movie shot by a woman, from a woman’s point of view, written by a woman, from a source of a woman’s novel,” Streep says. “And the men in it are great.
“It took us to this moment to get to this movie and, I mean, it’s not ‘The Hurt Locker.’ It is really the vernacular women speak in, think in, dream in. It’s so not what you expect, it’s really not. It’s linear, it’s intuitive, it’s great.”
Before then, movie fans can check out the Oscar-winning actress in director Steven Soderbergh’s “The Laundromat,” which explores the 2016 Panama Papers leak – and how power brokers’ financial crimes have an impact on normal folks – through the eyes of many characters, including a middle-class retired widow played by Streep.
Meryl Streep stars as a middle-class retired widow who investigates shady insurance dealings in Steven Soderbergh's "The Laundromat." (Photo: CLAUDETTE BARIUS/NETFLIX)
“This wasn’t just rich people doing things to avoid paying taxes,” she says. “This is a deadly game. People will protect their wealth.”
In Toronto, Streep was honored at a tribute gala Monday and praised the number of “women directors (and) women stories” at this year’s event. But the conversation with her and Soderbergh a day later turned to Olivia Wilde’s female-fronted “Booksmart,” and both expressed dismay over its poor box-office turnout amid wide critical acclaim.
Meryl Streep was honored at Toronto International Film Festival's first Tribute Gala on Monday. (Photo: CHRIS YOUNG/AP)
“The fact that that movie wasn’t a big hit was baffling to me. I’m like, ‘What do you gotta do?’ I don’t understand,” Soderbergh says. “Everybody was just kind of shocked and disappointed and wondered what does this mean? With something that’s this fun and charming, what’s not to like about it?
Streep can only heave a large sigh. “It’s the marketing. It didn’t find (its audience).”
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