How a crim­i­nal be­came the role model her girls needed


OK! (Australia) - - Contents -

Melissa Mccarthy plays the late Lee Is­rael in her new movie Can You Ever For­give Me?. Out of de­spair and des­per­a­tion, Lee sold forged let­ters from the lit­er­ary elite af­ter her ca­reer be­gan to stall in the early ’90s – she plead guilty to the crime in 1993.

And while she isn’t ex­actly a role model, Melissa was in­spired by a side of the char­ac­ter – and saw a valu­able les­son to pass along to her two daugh­ters (with hus­band of 13 years Ben Fal­cone), Vi­vian, 11, and Ge­or­gette, eight. ‘She didn’t need you to like her,’ the 48-year-old tells of Lee, who died in 2014. ‘She was fine as she was, and that’s a huge take­away. I was glad for the re­minder. I tell my kids all the time, you’re the one that de­ter­mines your self-worth, not… other peo­ple.’

That can be a tough mes­sage for girls to un­der­stand these days. ‘I think we do so much now of, “What do you think of me? Look at my va­ca­tion, do you like it?”’ the ac­tress ex­plains. ‘The thing about Lee is, even though [she] made things much more dif­fi­cult for [her­self], she didn’t care.’

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