Girl Scouts Among First U.S. Teens to Preview New Movie


April 10, 2003

Ellen Christie
(212) 852 8581

New York, N.Y.—Girl Scouts of the USA has teamed up with Fox Searchlight to screen the smash hit film Bend It Like Beckham for thousands of Girl Scouts in 30 cities across the U.S. Thirty Girl Scout councils are receiving free tickets to offer to girls 13-17. The comedy-drama depicts cultural clashes within a traditional Indian family in London, whose younger daughter, Jess, dreams of playing soccer professionally like the English superstar, David Beckham, her hero. Beckham is renowned for his ability to kick a ball and have it curve in an arc around the goalie—but to "bend it" can also be seen as a metaphor for how women in sports are often forced to bend the rules to achieve their goals.

"We're delighted to offer teen girls nationwide the fun and high-quality experience of seeing a film that embraces the values girls need to grow strong," said Sharon Hussey, Senior Vice President, Membership, Program and Research for Girl Scouts of the USA. "Soccer fans or not, this is one film that all teenage girls will enjoy."

In San Antonio, Texas, Kansas City, Missouri, and Jacksonville, Florida, post-screening discussions will be held on teen-related issues addressed in the film such as inclusiveness, leadership, and self-esteem.

Fox Searchlight, a unit of Fox Film Entertainment, is also thrilled with the partnership. "Being given the opportunity to share this uplifting film with Girl Scouts across the country is truly an honor," notes Nancy Utley, President, Fox Searchlight.

A hit worldwide, Bend It Like Beckham was produced by Deepak Nayar, whose extensive credits include the Oscar®-nominated Buena Vista Social Club, and is the third feature from award-winning writer/director Gurinder Chadha. Its U.S. opening was on March 12, and before that the film was released in the U.K. in April 2002. Later, it topped the box office charts in Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa, and was nominated for Best Film by the European Film Academy and Best European Film by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts.

Bend It Like Beckham boasts an exciting array of British talent including Parminder Nagra (Jess), Keira Knightley, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Juliet Stevenson, Frank Harper, award-winning songwriter Shaznay Lewis (of pop group All Saints), and, making his debut appearance in an English language feature, Bollywood superstar Anupam Kher.

About Girl Scouts of the USA

Girl Scouts of the USA is the preeminent organization for girls, and has more than 3.8 million girl and adult members. Now in its 91nd year, Girl Scouting cultivates values, social conscience, and self-esteem in girls, while teaching them critical life skills to later succeed as adults. In Girl Scouting's special girls-only environment, girls discover the fun, friendship, and power of girls together. The organization strives to serve girls from every corner of the United States, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. To volunteer your time or make a donation, call 1 (800) GSUSA 4 U. Visit us at www.girlscouts.org.