Emma Stone: “”It was both fascinating and scary to play Billie Jean.” – ‘Battle Of The Sexes’
TORONTO – It’s been a very good year for Emma Stone. On top of winning the Oscar for La La Land, she was recently anointed the world’s highest-paid movie actress (with $26 million in yearly earnings) by Forbes Magazine. Now she’s earning kudos for her performance as Billie Jean King in BATTLE OF THE SEXES, a film that revisits the historic 1973 exhibition match between the then reigning U.S. women’s tennis champion King and 55-year-old former men’s champion Bobby Riggs.
It was a clash that evolved from an absurd publicity stunt – Riggs had goaded King into the match by trashing the quality of women’s tennis and the feminist movement – into a feminist cause celebre that made international headlines and attracted 90 million viewers to the prime-time television broadcast. The event turned King, already an outspoken advocate for equal pay for women in tennis and a co-founder of the Women’s Tennis Association, into an instant feminist icon. Not only was she a powerful champion of the women’s movement but she would later become a staunch advocate for gay rights. Stone, who herself has been at the forefront in the battle for equal pay for women in Hollywood, jumped at the chance to play King.