Anything You Want to Be explores the collision of a teenager’s dreams with social expectations and sex-role stereotypes. In a series of vignettes, a high school girl finds that, despite her parents’ assurance that she can be “anything she wants to be,” reality presents another story. It was one of the first independent films of the early women’s movement to explore the external pressures and the more subtle internal pressures a girl faces in finding her identity.
As a filmmaker, Liane Brandon has been dedicated to exploring social issues, particularly issues that are important to women. She began making films in 1967 as a way to engage students in an inner city school where she taught. In 1972, Brandon, Julia Reichert, Amalie Rothschild, and Jim Klein found New Day Films, a now successful and honored institution in the film community. For years Brandon was a professor at University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where she taught media/film studies and filmmaking.