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Rebecca Stevens’ LILY AND THE ROCKETS to be adapted into feature film

LILY AND THE ROCKETS (Chicken House) by Rebecca Stevens is set to be made into a feature film by production company Free Turn Entertainment, as announced exclusively in Deadline.

Based on the true story of the original Arsenal Ladies’ team, one of several female-only football teams formed during World War One, LILY AND THE ROCKETS is an inspiring and timely story of football, friendship, and determination.

As outlined in Deadline’s article, “LILY AND THE ROCKETS will follow 18-year-old Lily, a courageous young woman who challenges the gender norms of the early 20th Century, driven by her passion for football and her skills as a goalkeeper. She joins a group of spirited women to form a soccer team at the local munitions factory where they work, and their journey becomes a tale of battling prejudice, societal barriers, sexism and scepticism to create a legacy that would transform the story of women’s soccer”.

The film will be written and directed by Farren Blackburn, who has said: ““This film is a tribute to the unsung heroines who not only faced the hardships of war but also fought for their right to play the sport they loved […] I am honoured to be a part of this project, shedding light on a pivotal moment in women’s sporting history and demonstrating the strength of female unity and determination. I’ve always wanted to make a football film and the story of Lily grabbed me from the minute I heard about it.”

Rebecca Stevens will be the creative consultant for the project. Discussing her inspiration for the book, Rebecca noted: “When I was a little girl, I thought it was unfair that there were things boys got to do that we didn’t, things that sounded fun like metalwork, woodwork — and football. But, our PE teacher said football wasn’t for girls, it was too physical, we could get hurt. We knew that wasn’t true, knew that girls had always kicked balls in the park with everyone else. But, we didn’t know about the girls and women in the early years of the twentieth century who, when their dads and brothers went off to fight in WWI, took over not just their jobs in the factories, but their places on the football fields. I only heard about them myself a few years ago, and as soon as I did, I wanted to tell their story.”

LILY AND THE ROCKETS is due to start production in 2024.

For the full Deadline article, click here.