The Other Woman: Why Female Friendships Matter

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The Other Woman, in theaters Friday, tells the story of three very different women—Cameron Diaz, Leslie Mann, and Kate Upton—who think they’ve found the love of their lives. Unfortunately, that guy is the same for all three of them. In the film, the trio forms an unlikely alliance to take down the lying, cheating SOB that three-timed them. The script is hilarious, features Hollywood hunks like Nikolaj Coster-Waldau and Taylor Kinney, but above all else, it’s a film about friendship.

“We’re trying to put it out there that women can be there for one another,” says Diaz. “Women don’t have to hate other women. You can celebrate other women’s beauty. We should be there for one another when we need it, and we can help each other through things, especially tough times—even when it’s the same man that all three just broke up with!” [Tweet this quote!]

In fact, in quite fitting fashion, the on-screen camaraderie between the leading ladies carried over off-screen too. “We just hit it off right away. We had a couple of cast dinners together. Cameron and I actually had a four-hour dinner and talked about everything,” says Mann. “We’re all different but very similar in a lot of ways so we compliment each other in real life and on film. Cameron is like my teacher, and Kate is like my daughter. She’s only five years older than my own daughter!”

And though the movie involves plenty of shenanigans like spiking drinks with laxatives and replacing shampoo with hair-removal cream, the message of female empowerment in the funny flick is clear. “Other movies written and directed by men with the same kind of plot sometimes seem to perpetuate the idea of women fighting over the men, so that leads us into believing that’s what we’re supposed to do," says Mann. "It’s refreshing to have this new twist on it.”

After almost 20 years in Hollywood, Diaz agrees. She is well-acquainted with how women are often represented on-screen, so it was important to the actress that her character was portrayed as incredibly driven, self-assured, and tough as nails (and of course impeccably dressed). “If there's ever a story about three women all being involved with the same man, it usually involves getting some eyeballs scratched out and weaves being snatched off. We didn't want this to be a story about revenge,” she says. “We all have our own strengths and weaknesses that can empower.” 

Be sure to check out The Other Woman in theaters this Friday, and tell us what you think about the "girl power" message in the comments below or tweet us at @Shape_Magazine.

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