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The Janes

Documentary 1h 41m 2022

In-Cinema experience
New York audiences can join us for the Closing Night screening at the HRW Film Festival.

  • Thursday May 26, 7:00 PM, IFC Center

This film offers Closed Captioning in English. You can select this option by clicking the ‘CC’ button in the bottom right of the player to turn on captions. Audio Described version of this film is available by purchasing the version titled: “Audio Described Version: The Janes” on this festival platform (HERE)

In the spring of 1972, police raided an apartment on the South Side of Chicago – arresting and charging seven women who were part of a clandestine network. Using code names, fronts, and safe houses to protect their identities and their work, they built an underground service for women seeking safe, affordable abortions in the pre-Roe v. Wade era – a time when abortion was a crime in most states and even circulating information about abortion was a felony in Illinois. They called themselves “Jane.” Oscar-nominated Tia Lessin and Emmy-nominated Emma Pildes’ revelatory documentary could not be more timely - The Janes offers first-hand accounts from the women at the center of the group, many speaking on the record for the first time. This galvanizing documentary tells the story of our past and, potentially, our future.

Grand Jury Prize Documentary Nominee, Sundance Festival, 2022

Courtesy of HBO Documentary Films

The Janes highlights the real dangers of restrictive abortion laws and the harms of criminalizing abortion. It really shows just how much is at stake right now in the US.” - Annerieke Smaak Daniel, Researcher, Women’s Rights Division, Human Rights Watch

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Tia Lessin


Emma Pildes


Daniel Arcana


Jessica Levin

Executive Producer

Susan Lacy