If you watched the Super Bowl, you probably couldn’t get enough of the stereotype-busting girls featured in the Always ad. You’re in luck, because there’s more inspiring footage of them in this extended, three-minute version of the video that was released in June of last year and has been viewed more than 54 million times..
In case you missed the spot last night, a voice off-camera asks people in a studio to demonstrate what it means to “run like a girl,” “fight like a girl,” and “throw like a girl.” They awkwardly prance in place, swat at the air, and half-heartedly pretend to toss a ball.
Then the director asks young girls to do the same: They sprint. Throw powerful punches. And wind up to pitch.
When asked what it means to 'run like a girl,' a little girl in a long, hot pink dress answers, “It means run fast as you can.”
The campaign’s message gave me the good kind of chills: “Let’s make #LikeAGirl mean amazing things.”
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But the longer clip tugs even harder on the heartstrings as young women consider the impacts of the phrase and offer empowering messages to girls who are still growing up.
“Yes, I kick like a girl, and I swim like a girl, and I walk like a girl, and I wake up in the morning like a girl because I am a girl. And that is not something that I should be ashamed of,” says one woman.
For this project, director Lauren Greenfield (who also directed THIN, a film about eating disorders) interviewed more than 100 people to get a sense of the change in confidence that happens in girls around puberty. As she says in this “Meet the Director” video, “Sometimes what seems small, like just saying, ‘Oh like "you run like a girl"'—it’s just words. But I think that that’s a moment where the identities are so fragile that it…can be really devastating."
"I think the most moving part of the experiment for all of us watching and engaging with them were how many women [acted out the negative stereotypes] and then said, ‘Wait a minute, why did I just do that?’”
In a separate interview with CNN, Greenfield added, "It made us realize how deep and ingrained the stereotypes were, but also people's desire to change them."
As one of the young women in the video put it, “Why can’t ‘run like a girl’ also mean win the race?”
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