WHAT: An animated video from Now This narrated by a cast of all-stars telling the 100-year history of Planned Parenthood.
WHO: Lena Dunham, Mindy Kaling, Amy Schumer, Tessa Thompson, Meryl Streep, Sasheer Zamata, Jennifer Lawrence, America Ferrera, and more lend their voices, while J.J. Abrams is listed as an executive producer.
WHY WE CARE: Few organizations are more beleaguered in the current political environment than Planned Parenthood. Congress wants to stop reimbursing the organization for services it provides to low-income patients, it’s a seemingly constant plaintiff in lawsuits that target abortion providers, it’s been the target of dubious “investigations” (that led to indictments for the investigators, not the clinics) from foes, it’s been the target of gunmen and bomb threats–but while the organization is frequently in the news, it’s not new. It was started 100 years ago by Margaret Sanger, and that history–including the ugly parts about Sanger’s belief in eugenics, which are not any part of the organization’s work today–gets told with minimalist animations by a host of extremely famous women. While some of those women are nearly as politically incendiary as Planned Parenthood itself right now (Meryl Streep and Lena Dunham are particularly polarizing these days), the combination of familiar voices and a story that shows how progress for one of the key services that people who can get pregnant need tends to come in fits and starts–and how we haven’t come as far as the organization and its supporters might hope in the past hundred years–makes for a compelling six minutes.