The first trailer has been released for Lizzie, director Craig William Macneill’s film about Lizzie Borden, the notorious woman at the bloody heart of one of America’s most enduring murder mysteries.
Borden was accused but ultimately acquitted of killing her wealthy father and stepmother with an ax in Fall River, Massachusetts. Today marks the 126th anniversary of the infamously unsolved 1892 crimes.
Chloë Sevigny, who executive-produced Lizzie, stars as Borden. Kristen Stewart plays Bridget Sullivan, the family housemaid and Borden’s rumoured lover.
Christina Ricci starred as Borden in the 2014 Lifetime TV movie Lizzie Borden Took an Ax and a subsequent limited series, but Lizzie is notable for its focus on Borden’s sexuality and the alleged lesbian affair that may have motivated the murders.
“So much has been said [about Borden],” Sevigny tells HuffPost. “But I think that we just really wanted to focus on how she went about finding [her freedom] and how important that was to her and what that meant to her. Whether it was through the relationship with [her maid] or ultimately killing her parents for money—because money equaled freedom then. It still does.”
“I wanted it to be this rousing, smash-the-patriarchy piece, and then she gets everything she wants monetarily—the capitalist dream,” Sevigny continues. “She gets the house on the hill, and Bridget leaves her. Her sister leaves her. She ends up alone.”
Lizzie, which premiered earlier this year at the Sundance Film Festival, also stars Jamey Sheridan, Fiona Shaw, Kim Dickens, Denis O’Hare, and Jeff Perry.
An Oscar nominee for her work in Boys Don’t Cry, Sevigny has previously taken queer roles in projects such as Will & Grace, If These Walls Could Talk 2, and Hit & Miss.
Following her high-profile relationship with Twilight co-star Robert Pattinson, Stewart opened up about dating women in 2016 and came out as “like, so gay, dude” last year on SNL. She later clarified that she identifies as bisexual.
Lizzie is out September 14 in theaters.
Watch the new trailer below.