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Little Women
Greta Gerwig: 5 Movies That Inspired My 'Little Women'
Greta Gerwig
Greta Gerwig
Director/Writer

Greta Gerwig's take on Little Women breathes fresh life into the beloved source material, more than 150 after Louisa May Alcott's seminal coming-of-age story was first published.

"It's the book that I loved over all books, and the character of Jo March in particular was my character," Gerwig said in conversation with The Academy. "All of the girls, they felt like my sisters and my memories. I had it very deep in my emotional landscape, and then when I was 30, I reread the book and couldn't believe how modern it was, how fresh it was, and how it felt like it could have been written yesterday."

Below, the filmmaker invites A.frame to look into the movies that inspired her vision.

1
Meet Me In St. Louis
1944
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The similarities to Little Women are immediately noticeable. While this one takes place before the 1904 World's Fair and involves several musical numbers, it's still hyper-focused on four sisters dealing with their own hopes and dreams.

2
Heaven’s Gate
1980
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Set in America soon after the Civil War, this movie captures some of the tensions present between Americans and European immigrants in a small county of Wyoming.

3
Two English Girls
1971
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Two sisters from England both fall in love with the dashing Claude from France. What follows is a contemplation on the complicated effects of love and separation.

4
Jules and Jim
1962
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This tender adaptation of a novel written by Henri-Pierre Roché (who also wrote Two English Girls) captures the intimate story of a doomed love triangle.

5
The Age of Innocence
1993
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This historical drama leans more heavily into romance than Little Women, but the young characters facing oppressive tradition and blooming love are certainly relevant.

© 2022 Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences