The incredible true story of the extraordinary woman behind the most valuable bottle of spirit ever sold at auction
Celebrating the extraordinary woman behind the most valuable bottle of spirit ever sold at auction, The Macallan has released a film biopic of former Managing Director, Janet Harbinson.
Paying homage to her quiet heroism, the film centres on the real-life story of Janet Harbinson, known as Nettie. Following her husband’s sudden death in 1918, Nettie assumed control of his whisky distillery and, through her sheer passion, unwavering commitment, and dedication to craftsmanship, she kept the business afloat and helped to rebuild the local area.
Without setting out to do so, she also crafted The Macallan Fine & Rare 1926, which achieved legendary status after it fetched £1.5m at Sotheby’s in 2019. Several years on, it continues to be the world’s most valuable bottle of spirit ever sold at auction. Its very existence is a direct legacy of Janet Harbinson’s commitment to doing the right thing for her family, her community and The Macallan.
Nettie’s story drew an impressive list of collaborators, including lead actress Emily Mortimer, film director Mike Newell, and script writer Allan Schiach (under the alias Allan Scott), who not only was the Managing Director of The Macallan for 18 years, but his great aunt was none other than the heroine of the film, Janet Harbinson.
The beautiful wardrobe worn by the characters in the film is the work of Scottish fashion designer Christopher Kane, who created a series of 1920s outfits using historic, luxury fabrics from artisan suppliers, including hand-crafted lace and bespoke The Macallan tweed.