The best influential quotes from Hollywood’s hottest stars.
We all know these famous celebrities from Hollywood. We have their posters on our walls and their voices in our heads. We have been hearing their names and watching their television shows and movies for years. We tell ourselves that there was nothing like old Hollywood and imagine ourselves walking the red carpet in those fabulous dresses, and riding in those fancy cars, using those really long cigarette holders.
In reality, we know that being a celebrity isn’t all glamour. As hard as we fight for equal pay today, women in Hollywood back then had to fight to get even a fraction of what they deserved. In a time where many men believed women to be genetically inferior, these trailblazers took the world by storm, showing us that women can succeed in a male dominated business.
Alex Guy Balch was the first female film producer, all the way back in 1911. The Moving Picture News printed that she was, “a fine example of what a woman can do if given a square chance in life.” She ended up producing, directing, or supervising over 1000 films in her career (short films mostly, but some full length) — sometimes all three at once.
Lucille Ball helped invent syndication by having I Love Lucy filmed on quality tape instead of broadcast live. After she bought out her ex-husband, Desi Arnaz from their production company, Desilu Productions, she was also the first woman to run a major television studio. The company went on to produce hits like Mission: Impossible and Star Trek.
While Mary Tyler Moore wasn’t the first woman on TV to wear pants, she was the first to normalize the concept of women dressing casually. When asked by TV Guide about her character on The Dick van Dyke Show she said, “I had Laura wear pants, because I said, ‘Women don’t wear full-skirted dresses to vacuum in. Women kind of breathed a sigh of relief, too, and said, ‘Hey, that’s right. That’s what we wear.'”
Donna Reed served as an uncredited producer and director of her show, The Donna Reed Show way back in the 1950’s. This dubbed her the first female television executive in history!
Sometimes we forget that these larger than life figures were real everyday women. They were sisters, and friends, trying to put their stamp on the world. When we think of Marylin Monroe we think of sex-appeal and scandal. We don’t always acknowledge that she was the first real movie star the world had ever seen. When we think of Audrey Hepburn with think of beauty and grace, but we don’t often think of the years of her life she spent dedicated to charity work. When we think of Lucille Ball we think of a beautiful funny woman but we forget she was a business powerhouse.
These are the woman that helped shape the world we are lucky to have been raised in. Here are some of the best progressive, influential and inspirational quotes when we need a little extra motivation from the celebrities of Hollywood:
1. Own your own strength.
“I’m not funny. What I am is brave.” —Lucille Ball
2. Don’t rely on others to show you what’s what.
“A dame that knows the ropes isn’t likely to get tied up.” —Mae West
3. Be ready!
“Sometimes opportunities float right past your nose. Work hard, apply yourself, and be ready. When an opportunity comes you can grab it.” —Julie Andrews
4. Embrace your dark side.
“In this business, until you’re known as a monster, you’re not a star.” —Bette Davis
5. Know your strengths and use them.
“No one ever expects a great lay to pay all of the bills.” —Jean Harlow
6. Don’t measure your worth in carrots.
“I never worry about diets. The only carrots that interest me are the number you get in a diamond.” —Mae West
7. Find what makes you feel at home.
“I’ve always taken ‘The Wizard of Oz’ very seriously, you know. I believe in the idea of the rainbow. And I’ve spent my entire life trying to get over it.” —Judy Garland
8. Keep going!
“Perseverance is failing nineteen times and succeeding the twentieth.” — Julie Andrews
9. Don’t go in with pre-conceived notions.
“It [prejudice] is such a waste. It makes you logy and half-alive. It gives you nothing. It takes away.” —Dorothy Dandridge
10. Know what you need and give it out.
“I was born with a tremendous need for affection, and a terrible need to give it.” —Audrey Hepburn
11. Don’t accept less than you deserve.
“I’m selfish, impatient and a little insecure. I make mistakes, I am out of control and at times hard to handle. But if you can’t handle me at my worst, then you sure as hell don’t deserve me at my best.” —Marilyn Monroe
12. Don’t set yourself short.
“I’m no model lady. A model is just the imitation of the real thing.” —Mae West
13. In times of trouble, keep learning.
When adversity hits, go out and learn something. —Julie Andrews
14. Always keep trying.
“The more things you do, the more you can do.” —Lucille Ball
15. You are worth more than your body.
“Must I always wear a low cut dress to be important?” —Jean Harlow
16. Have pride in your own courage.
“I’ve been through it all, baby, I’m mother courage.” —Elizabeth Taylor
17. Your personality is what makes things special.
“Personality is the glitter that sends your little gleam across the footlights and the orchestra pit into that big black space where the audience is.” —Mae West
18. Believe in Miracles.
“Anyone who doesn’t believe in miracles is not a realist.” —Audrey Hepburn
19. Don’t accept things that you didn’t earn.
“The only way to enjoy anything in this life is to earn it first.” —Ginger Rogers
20. Know what makes you tick.
“I don’t have a short temper, I just have a quick reaction to bullshit” —Elizabeth Taylor
21. Be in charge of your own finances.
“Im letting no man handle my bank account.” —Hattie McDaniel
22. Hold yourself to your own standards.
“I’ve never really thought on myself as a sex goddess, more a comedienne who could dance.” —Rita Hayworth
23. It is okay to put yourself first.
“Love yourself first and everything else falls into line. Your really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world.” —Lucille Ball
25. Believe you can, and you can.
“If someone tells you that you cannot do something and you believe it, they are right.” —Carol Burnett
26. Don’t rely on miracles.
“Miracles, contrary to popular belief, do not just happen. A miracle is the achievement of the impossible, and it is only when we put aside out greed, anger, pride and prejudice so that our minds are open and ready to accept it, that a miracle can occur.” —Julie Andrews
27. Love is beautiful.
“Love isn’t an emotion or an instinct. It’s an art.” —Mae West
28. The best is yet to come.
“I am not a has-been. I am a will be. “ —Lauren Bacall
29. Count first on yourself.
“You have to be self reliant and strong in this town, otherwise you will be destroyed.” — Joan Crawford
30. Use what you have to better yourself and the world around you.
“As you grow older, you will discover that you have two hands, one for helping yourself, the other for helping others.” —Audrey Hepburn
31. The saddest thing anyone has ever said about dreams.
“We cast away priceless time in dreams, born of imagination, fed upon illusion, and put to death by reality.” —Judy Garland
32. Don’t be afraid to show your real self.
“Hollywood always wanted me to be pretty, but I fought for realism.” —Bette Davis
33. Don’t stifle the best of you.
“When I’m good, I’m very good, but when I’m bad, I’m better.” —Mae West
34. Don’t be afraid to be enchanted.
“Every age can be enchanting, provided you live within it. ”—Brigitte Bardot
35. Don’t underestimate the fluency of body language.
“I speak two languages – body and English.” —Mae West
36. The equation of life.
“Comedy is tragedy plus time.” —Carol Burnett
37. The way you carry yourself is important.
“Elegance is the only beauty that never fades.” —Audrey Hepburn
38. Don’t be ashamed of who you are.
“I’m not young. What’s wrong with that? ” —Vivien Leigh
39. Keep things in perspective and then take care of yourself.
“Give the people what they want and then go have a hamburger.” —Judy Garland
40. Never wonder what could have been.
“I’d rather regret the things I have done than regret the things I haven’t done.” —Lucille Ball
41. Variety is the spice of life.
“I like to wake up each morning feeling a new man.” —Jean Harlow
42. Art will sustain you.
“Feed the body food and drink, it will survive today. Feed the soul art and music, it will live forever.” —Julie Andrews
43. Keep your dukes up, girl.
“The only way you make it through life is to fight. You don’t get there the easy way. If you feel sorry for yourself, and you let yourself go down, you will drown.” —Debbie Reynolds
44. The most wonderful thing ever said.
“I believe in pink. I believe that laughing is the best calorie burner. I believe in kissing, kissing a lot. I believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day, and…I believe in miracles.” —Audrey Hepburn
45. Don’t deny yourself out of fear.
“I was the shyest human ever invented, but I had a lion inside me that wouldn’t shut up.” —Ingrid Bergman
46. Sisters are doing it for themselves.
“I’m letting no man handle my bank account.” —Hattie McDaniel
47. Don’t be afraid of people knowing who you are.
“I sent the flowers across the hall to Mrs. Nixon, but her husband remembered what a Democrat I am and sent them back.” —Bette Davis
48. Don’t reveal yourself too soon.
“Sex appeal is fifty percent what you’ve got and fifty percent what people think you’ve got.” —Sophia Loren
49. Fall out of line.
“If you obey all the rules, you miss all the fun.” —Katherine Hepburn
50. Perfection is pretentious.
“The problem with people who have no vices is that generally you can be pretty sure they’re going to have some pretty annoying virtues.” —Elizabeth Taylor
51. Know your limits.
“I think knowing what you cannot do is more important than knowing what you can.” —Lucille Ball
52. Keep your head on straight.
“To let a fool kiss you is bad…To let a kiss fool you is worse. ‘Twas not my lips you kissed but my soul.” —Judy Garland
53. Don’t be afraid to eat.
“Everything you see I owe to spaghetti.” —Sophia Loren
54. Stay on your toes.
“A gentleman is simply a patient wolf.” —Lana Turner
55. Don’t stifle yourself.
“I couldn’t get the laughter out of my head. It wasn’t career. It wasn’t even a choice. It was a calling.” —Carol Burnett
56. Be who you are.
“Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.” —Judy Garland
57. Don’t deny yourself.
“From the moment I was six I felt sexy. And let me tell you it was hell, sheer hell, waiting to do something about it.” —Bette Davis
58. Breathe in your passions.
“If you took acting away from me, I’d stop breathing.” —Ingrid Bergman
59. Don’t be afraid of fashion.
“Life is a party. Dress for it.” —Audrey Hepburn
60. Don’t weigh your blessings based on your relationship status.
“If you are blessed, you are blessed, whether you are married or single.” —Greta Garbo
61. Kindness is important.
“I am the nicest goddamn dame that ever lived.” —Bette Davis
62. Don’t be afraid to get hurt.
“Because nobody goes through life without a scar.” —Carol Burnett
63. Improve the world you live in.
“Leave every place you go, everything you touch, a little better for your having been there.” —Julie Andrews
64. Don’t be afraid to be someone’s indulgence.
“Once in his life, every man is entitled to fall madly in love with a gorgeous red head.” —Lucille Ball
65. Never lose hope.
“To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow.” —Audrey Hepburn