Be a Leading Lady: What I Learned from My Favorite Holiday Movie

Posted December 14, 2012 by Marcy Farrey in On the Ladder

Okay, I’ll admit it: I love, love, love holiday movies. I’m a sucker for romantic comedies, and my movie collection is a bit embarrassing. Still, there’s nothing like watching my favorite romantic holiday movies in the weeks leading up to Christmas.

One of my favorites is The Holiday with Cameron Diaz and Kate Winslet. There’s this great moment in the movie that I always remember, and I think every Career Girl should keep it in mind. Kate Winslet’s character, Iris, is sitting down to dinner with Albert, the elderly gentleman she met who is a legendary screenwriter. Iris is just explaining why she has fled to America for the holidays — to avoid an ex-boyfriend who just got engaged. Here is a snippet of their conversation:

Albert: Iris, in the movies we have leading ladies and we have the best friend. You, I can tell, are a leading lady, but for some reason you are behaving like the best friend.

Iris: You’re so right. You’re supposed to be the leading lady of your own life, for God’s sake! Arthur, I’ve been going to a therapist for three years, and she’s never explained anything to me that well. That was brilliant. Brutal, but brilliant.

This line often comes to mind when I’m struggling with a career or personal issue. Am I being the leading lady, or am I acting like the best friend? Like Iris says, we should all be the leading ladies of our own lives. Too often we are waiting for something to happen before we take the next step, before we make a decision. But we are in charge, and we don’t need to wait on anyone or anything else. We can lead, we can be in the spotlight — rather than just tag along for the ride and provide some comic relief.

So in 2013 — and even right now — take back control! Be your own leading lady!

About the Author

Marcy Farrey

Marcy Farrey is a videographer, writer, and editor. In her previous life, she worked as a broadcast news reporter and producer in Lincoln, Nebraska and as a writer and producer in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She has a Master of Arts in Writing and Publishing from DePaul University and a Bachelor of Science in Journalism from Northwestern University. Learn more about Marcy on her website

One Comment


    I LOVE The Holiday — one of my favorites too!!

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