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Vertigo Releasing has acquired Phyllis Nagy’s “Call Jane,” starring Elizabeth Banks and Sigourney Weaver, for U.K. and Ireland distribution.

The film explores the true story of the Janes, an underground collective of women, who in Chicago during the 1960s, came together to secretly provide nearly 12,000 women and girls with safe and secure abortions. It follows Joy (Banks), a suburban wife, and mother to a smart teenage daughter, whose happy life is derailed when her much wanted pregnancy becomes life threatening.

The cast also includes Chris Messina and Kate Mara.

The film had a stellar festival run, including play dates at Sundance and Berlin. It is written by Hayley Schore and Roshan Sethi and produced by Robbie Brenner, David Wulf and Kevin McKeon.

Reviewing the film for Variety, critic Peter Debruge wrote: “The female empowerment message comes through loud and clear in ‘Call Jane,’ especially in Banks’ performance.”

Wahida Niblo, Vertigo Releasing’s director of publicity and marketing said: “We are so delighted to be working with director Phyllis Nagy on her film which vividly captures the sense of female empowerment and is very much a film which is relevant for today.”

Vertigo acquired the rights from Protagonist Pictures. Vertigo’s Edward Caffrey, and Protagonist’s George Hamilton, negotiated the deals. Vertigo plans to release “Call Jane” widely in cinemas from Nov. 4.

“Call Jane” is an RB Entertainment Production and Redline Entertainment production, in association with Our Turn Productions, FirstGen Content and LB Entertainment.

Vertigo’s upcoming releases include David Cronenberg’s “Crimes of the Future,” “Mr. Malcolm’s List,” starring Zawe Ashton and Theo James, and coming-of-age film “Girls Girls Girls.”