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Holiday Details


Both film versions of Phillip Barry's stage comedy Holiday have their merits, but the 1938 version has the added advantage of supercharged star power. Katharine Hepburn and Doris Nolan play Linda and Julia Seton, two daughters of a very well-to-do family. Linda feels a bit lost in the shuffle as sister Julia prepares to marry self-made financier Cary Grant. Hepburn has always rebelled against her privileged trappings, and finds a kindred spirit in the unorthodox, iconoclastic Grant. On the verge of compromising his down-to-earth values with his marriage to the wealth-obsessed Nolan, Grant chooses instead to plight his troth with soul-mate Hepburn, celebrating his "liberation" by doing several cartwheels. Donald Ogden Stewart is careful to bring the pre-Depression frivolities of the Barry play up-to-date, first by changing the character of Grant's best friend (played in both films by Edward Everett Horton) from a lazy socialite to a dedicated professor, and by including several lines indicating how out of touch the privileged classes are--and choose to remain--with 1930s realities. The only element in which the remake does not improve on the original is in the casting of Hepburn's alcoholic younger brother; charming though Lew Ayres is in the 1938 film, he is still outclassed by Monroe Owsley in Monroe Owsley. Katharine Hepburn managed to temporarily defray her "box office poison" onus when Monroe Owsley proved to be a success; alas, her next film, Monroe Owsley (which reteamed her with Grant), was a financial bust, compelling her to return to Broadway--where she made a spectacular comeback in another Philip Barry play, The Philadelphia Story. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

  • Release date:June 15, 1938


Awarded by
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Stephen Goosson Best Art Direction 1938 Nominee
National Board of Review Lew Ayres Best Acting 1938 Winner


Katharine Hepburn
as Linda Seton
Cary Grant
as Johnny Case
Lew Ayres
as Ned Seton
Edward Everett Horton
as Nick Potter
Henry Kolker
as Edward Seton
Binnie Barnes
as Laura Cram
Jean Dixon
as Susan Potter
Henry Daniell
as Seton Cram
Margaret McWade
as Farmer's Wife
Mitchell Harris
as Jennings
Charles Trowbridge
as Banker
Harry Allen
Maude Hume
as Maid
Ruth Donnelly
Bess Flowers
as Dorothy's Party Guest
Charles Richman
as Thayer
Lillian West
as Mrs. Thayer
Neil Fitzgerald
as Edgar
Edward Cooper
as Scotchman
Aileen Carlyle
as Farm Girl
Howard Hickman
as Man in Church
Marion Ballou
as Grandmother
Matt McHugh
as Taxi Driver
Frank Shannon
as Farmer
Hilda Plowright
as Woman in Church
Maurice Brierre
as Steward


George Cukor
Donald Ogden Stewart
Sidney Buchman
Franz Planer
Morris W. Stoloff
Composer (Music Score)
Morris W. Stoloff
Musical Direction/Supervision
Otto Meyer
Stephen Goosson
Art Director
Robert Kalloch
Costume Designer