The movie is based on the condition 'hysteria,' which Victorian doctors believed
happened to women when their ‘female semen’ became backed up. Married women were told to have more sex, but widows and virgins were relieved by their doctors. Complaining of being tired, doctors invented a steam powered vibrator (called a “Manipulator”) in 1869. The first vibrator was actually invented in 1734 and was a wind-up model called a “Tremoussoir”.
inserts a story behind the product - a story about a Victorian-era doctor, played by Jonathan Pryce, who performs this treatment on women. Maggie Gyllenhaal plays his daughter and Hugh Dancy is set to play another medic, who with his colleague, Rupert Everett’s character, make the vibrator’s discovery. Dancy is set to play Maggie Gyllenhaal’s love interest.
This is not the first sexually themed movie for Gyllenhaal. In 2002 she played Lee Holloway in Steven Shainberg’s film “Secretary”,
a Sadomasochistic themed romantic-comedy/drama.
Tanya Wexler is directing the film, set to start filming in London and Luxembourg in October.