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Rachel Weisz Stars as Sapphic Gynaecologist Twins in “Dead Ringers”

Rachel Weisz portraying identical twins in Dead Ringers

Rachel Weisz portrays sapphic twins in the upcoming Prime series Dead Ringers, an adaption of David Cronenberg’s Dead Ringers movie. Alice Birch (Lady Macbeth) is the head writer and executive producer. Weisz was hired as a co-executive producer as well as being cast in the lead roles. The series will exclusively stream on Prime Video from April 21.

Cronenberg’s 1988 psychological thriller follows twin gynecologists played by Jeremy Irons. It was based on the lives of Stewart and Cyril Marcus (1930-1975), real-life identical twins who specialised in fertility treatments that were found dead under suspicious circumstances. The novel Twins by Bari Wood and Jack Geasland, a “highly fictionalized” version of the Mascus twins’ story, also inspired the film.

In the original, Irons played Beverly and Elliot Mantle who, despite being identical twins, were totally opposite in personality. Elliot is the confident womanizing brother who seduces women who enter the clinic, whereas Beverly is shy. Elliot switches himself with his brother, unbeknownst to the women, and when an actress named Claire Niveau visits the clinic, she ends up in a bizarre love triangle with the brothers. 

The television adaptation starring Weisz was first announced in August 2020, with Amazon Studios (Annapurna Televison) and Morgan Creek Entertainment signing on. 

A teaser was released by Prime Video in early March. The caption reads:

“A modern take on David Cronenberg’s 1988 thriller starring Jeremy Irons, Dead Ringers stars Rachel Weisz playing the double-lead roles of Elliot and Beverly Mantle, twins who share everything: drugs, lovers, and an unapologetic desire to do whatever it takes—including pushing the boundaries of medical ethics—in an effort to challenge antiquated practices and bring women’s health care to the forefront.”

The teaser opens with Blondie’s “Heart of Glass” playing and Weisz as identical twins with juxtaposed vibes. One is proper and pregnant, with the other hunched over and bleeding from the face. They appear to be in a hospital waiting room.

A voice, presumably Weisz’s, says “Radicalism always begins with something small.” 

According to Vogue, the first episode of the series features the twins separately sleeping with a famous actress who is also their patient. Is this another case of the “Predatory Lesbian” trope?

Lesbian conductor Marin Alsop slammed Tár–a 2022 film starring Cate Blanchett, about a sapphic conductor who is accused of abusing young women–for perpetuating the “Predatory Lesbian” trope. She argued that female characters are given powerful, responsible positions in films just to ‘prove’ we’re as bad as men when in power, or else ‘too hysterical’ to handle the responsibility. 

“There are so many men — actual, documented men — this film [Tár] could have been based on but, instead, it puts a woman in the role but gives her all the attributes of those men,” Alsop said. “That feels antiwoman. To assume that women will either behave identically to men [when in power] or become hysterical, crazy, insane is to perpetuate something we’ve already seen on film so many times before.”

All six episodes of Dead Ringers will be available to stream on Prime Video from April 21. Each episode runs for 60 minutes.

The post Rachel Weisz Stars as Sapphic Gynaecologist Twins in “Dead Ringers” appeared first on AfterEllen.

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