There was a time when people believed a woman could never beat a man, especially in sports. But Billie Jean King changed all that with her tennis showdown against the so-called male chauvinist pig Bobby Riggs. Emma Stone and Steve Carell are now taking the fight to the big screen, and the stars went through a lot to make it look real.
It was the match known around the world as the “Battle of the Sexes” — Billie Jean King versus Bobby Riggs in 1973.
Now, the “Battle of the Sexes” is going from the tennis court to the big screen.
Steve Carell (as Bobby Riggs): “How about this? Man versus woman, male chauvinist pig versus hairy-legged feminist.”
Billie Jean says when it came to the cast, it was game, set, match, especially when she learned Emma Stone would be playing her.
Billie Jean King: “I about fainted. I couldn’t believe I heard … I thought, you know, clean your ears out. I mean, she’s just an all-time great, and I just couldn’t believe it.”
But Emma says Billy Jean helped her prep for the movie, and didn’t go easy on her.
Emma Stone: “We went on the court together. She threw a lot of balls at me because she realized I needed a lot of footwork at the beginning so I was sort of like a golden retriever like chasing after balls.”
Both Emma and Steve Carell, who plays the notorious male chauvinist Bobby Riggs, took their preparations seriously.
Emma got ready for court, but she also hit the gym, doing…
Emma Stone: “Just a bunch of, like, very heavy weightlifting and dragging sleds.”
And she says she was happy to bulk up.
Emma Stone: “She obviously is such a machine and has such physical prowess, and I had never fully understood that, so it was really amazing.”
As for Steve, his prep took on a bit of a different level.
Steve Carell: “Well, I’m gonna play Bobby Riggs. I’m gonna grow sideburns, I grew my hair. I read one review that’s talked about how bad my wig was. That’s not a wig, it’s my hair, thank you.”
Now that we settled that, let’s talk about that sweatsuit.
Steve Carell: “It’s called the Steve Stinksuit. You can find it on eBay, it’s $35.”
But warning all you eBay bidders…
Steve Carell: “They’re so gross because they’re all elasticized, and at the bottom, if you pull the elastic out, there’s just water just running down into your shoe. It’s disgusting.”
All jokes aside, it’s safe to say these two aced their parts. Take it straight from the horse’s mouth.
Billie Jean King: “They got who we were on and off the court … they got the truth.”
“Battle of the Sexes” bounces into theaters on Friday.
Copyright 2018 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.